By Otsile Kadiege
We recently had the opportunity to sample Isuzu’s updated mu-X which boasts a handful of exterior and interior updates, a new model derivative and new convenience features. Isuzu has left a majority of the mechanics unchanged.
mu-X exterior updates
On the outside, the updated seven-seater SUV gets a slightly redesigned front grille finished in Magnetite and Black Chrome. It also gets newly designed 20-inch wheels (LS and LSE models get 18-inch wheels as standard which replaces the 17-inche wheels), Magnetite roof rails, Magnetite side steps, rear LED combination lamps, hands-free power tailgate with a nifty step-away feature and a new Norwegian Blue body paint which replaces Santos brown.
The exterior changes are hard to see until you get up close or read a review like this one which details what has changed. That said, the mu-X still looks bold, aggressive and stunning, especially the Onyx grade with its fancy new 20-inch shoes.
mu-X interior updates
Changes aboard the updated mu-X include Dark Magnetite garnishes on the dashboard and door panels, and 8-way power leather seats. The LSE grade gets an auto dimming rear view mirror, paddle shifters and remote engine start.
Changes inside are very minimal. That said, the interior continues to impress with a perfect blend of soft touch materials and plastics, and good cabin insulation. The touch display is one area we hoped they’d update – the screen is too dim for our liking and the resolution, and graphics are okay but could be better.
mu-X safety and assistance systems
Standard driver aids across the Isuzu mu-X range comprise Electronic Stability Control (ESC) with Traction Control, ABS brakes with Electronic Brake Force Distribution (EBD) and Brake Assist System (BAS), Brake Override Accelerator (BOA), Hill Start Assist (HAS), Hill Descent Control (HDC), Trailer Sway Control, Cruise Control, as well as front and rear parking sensors with a rear view camera.
The passive safety features driver and front passenger airbags, front seat side airbags, curtain airbags and driver knee airbag. Remote central locking is combined with a factory-fitted anti-theft alarm system, transponder immobiliser and selectable door unlocking.
As standard, the LSE and Onyx models are equipped with tyre pressure monitoring system, blind spot monitor, rear cross traffic alert and rear radar. Convenient keyless operation utilizes the Passive Entry Start System (PESS) with walk-away automatic door locking, and the two new features added for the 2023 model year: remote start, and hands-free powered tailgate with step sensor.
The mu-X is still powered by a 3.0-litre turbodiesel engine making 140kW and 450Nm. It’s paired to a 6-speedautomatic transmission. An electronically controlled part-time four-wheel drive system allows easy switching between two-wheel drive (2H), 4×4 high range (4H) and 4×4 low range (4L) using a rotary dial on the centre console.One mechanical update worth mentioning is the new harness protector for the 4×4 rear differential lock.
Isuzu SA says during the course of the year they will add the 1.9-litre diesel powerplant due to customer demand.
mu-X model range and pricing
A total of five mu-X models are now available, comprising the 3.0 LS and 3.0 LSE which can be specified in 4×2 and 4×4 versions, as well as the luxuriously appointed range-topping 3.0 Onyx 4×4.
mu-X LS 4×2 – R784,300
mu-X LS 4×4 – R867,600
mu-X LSE 4×2 – R826,200
mu-X LSE 4×4 – R909,500
mu-X Onyx 4×4 – R928,100
The mu-X is sold with a five-year/90 000 km service plan, 5 year/120 000 km warranty and roadside assistance, and 5 year/unlimited distance anti-corrosion warranty. Service intervals are every 15 000 km or 12 months.
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