Isuzu D-MAX 4×4 tests abilities through sand dunes, scenic terrain of Ilocos

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2014 Isuzu D-MAX Ilocos Media Event Photo 39Aside from being a workhorse that’s made to withstand urban streets, the all-new Isuzu D-MAX LS 4×4 is also built to serve as an active lifestyle companion without compromising maximum fun over any terrain.

Isuzu Philippines Corporation (IPC) showcased the pickup’s off-road driving performance and comfort through an event that saw the D-MAX LS 4×4 on the terrain of the world-famous Paoay sand dunes in Ilocos Norte from February 27 to March 1 of this year.

Over the soft surface of the sand dunes, the D-MAX LS 4×4 provided excellent stability and traction. The dunes provided the perfect environment for demonstrating the pickup’s advanced, electronically-controlled 4×4 system. In 4×4 High and 4×4 Low modes, which can be engaged via a knob conveniently located on the vehicle’s center console, the D-MAX LS 4×4 tackled the tricky terrain, and overcame conditions far more taxing than anything that can be found or experienced in normal driving situations.

The vehicle also sports a spacious cabin with leather seats finished in a rich mahogany shade, a six-way power-adjustable driver’s seat, a backseat center armrest, 15 storage compartments and 10 cupholders, as well as a premium 2-DIN CD/MP3/Micro USB/Aux Input/Jack/Tuner with Bluetooth connectivity that is coupled with six-way speakers, and a first-in-class ceiling-mounted exciter speaker.

IPC President Nobuo Izumina said that, “In the all-new D-MAX 4×4, these traits are enhanced through features that improve performance and convenience, while at the same time guaranteeing durability, reliability and fuel efficiency. The test drive on the sand dunes and the roads of Ilocos should remove doubts regarding this pickup’s capabilities.”

IPC President Nobuo Izumina (middle) with the All-New D-MAX 4x4 at the soft terrain of the beach  at Bangui Windmills, which contains small pebbles and not-so-fine sand. Also present were IPC EVP Takashi Tomita (right) and SVP for Sales Arthur Balmadrid.
IPC President Nobuo Izumina (middle) with the All-New D-MAX 4×4 at the soft terrain of the beach at Bangui Windmills, which contains small pebbles and coarse sand. Also present were IPC EVP Takashi Tomita (right) and SVP for Sales Arthur Balmadrid.

The new 4WD Terrain Command Select Dial ensures the off-roading prowess of the D-MAX LS 4×4, and allows the driver to switch from 4×2 to 4×4 High mode even while traveling at speeds of up to 100kph. The truck boasts an approach angle of 30 degrees and a departure angle of 22.7 degrees, and can be tilted sideways on a 49-degree slope. It is also equipped with a Limited Slip Differential, and has one of the highest ground clearances among pickups, thanks to a ride height of 235mm. Along with 255/65 R17 tires, the truck is very suitable over unpaved roads and flooded situations.

The D-MAX is designed with a heavy-duty chassis, and a body structure that’s constructed from high-tensile strength steel, making it more rigid. With a superior suspension system composed of independent double wishbone with coil springs in front, and semi-elliptical over-slung leaf springs in the rear, vehicle stability is achieved even when burdened with a heavy payload.

D-MAX LS 4×4’s power is provided by a 4JJ1-TC iTEQ 3.0-liter, Diesel Common Rail Direct Injection engine with Turbocharger and Intercooler, which makes 146Ps @ 3,800rpm and 294Nm @ 1,400rpm to 3,400rpm. Pair to that a new 5-speed automatic transmission that has been thoroughly modernized with a sequential shift function.

To let customers know of the D-MAX 4×4’s capabilities, IPC will stage a series of 4×4 test-drive activities starting at Isuzu Pampanga on April 25 to 27; Isuzu Cebu on May 9 to 11; Isuzu Bacolod on May 23 to 25; Isuzu Cagayan de Oro on June 6 to 8; and Isuzu Davao on June 20 to 22.