Pumped-up special editions launched in Melbourne. Breathe easy, Ranger Raptor fans – they're concepts.
Isuzu's Team D-Max has used the National 4x4 Outdoors Show in Melbourne to reveal a pair of pumped-up concepts before they hit the outdoors show circuit, in the D-Max and MU-X Concept X.
The duo both ride on a set of 38/15.5R20 Mud Terrain tyres from Toyo, credited as the inspiration for the project. They're housed under a seven-inch suspension lift, facilitated by a five-link rear coil setup on both the D-Max and MU-X, for approach and departure angles of 50 degrees and 38 degrees respectively.
There are 60mm remote reservoir shock absorbers at all four corners, too. Four-wheel discs with 390mm/355mm rotors front/rear hide behind the wheels, designed to deliver "the ultimate stopping power" in an off-roader.
On the outside, the MU-X sports pumped-up guards and a swollen bonnet, along with winches at both ends. There's a sturdy-looking side step, just in case the person trying to get on board isn't 18-feet tall, and suitably aggressive decals to help it stand out.
The D-Max has a completely bespoke tray, home to a spare wheel carrier and four diesel jerry cans. It has a similar front-end treatment, right down to the red-lensed headlights and swollen guards.
Power in the concepts comes from the same 4JJ1-TC four-cylinder turbo-diesel engine offered in the production car, making the same 130kW and 430Nm. The only change is unique exhaust system, presumably for the sake of packaging the extra off-road hardware on the concepts.
The six-speed torque converter is carried over from the production car. It also shares one of the production car's shortcomings: neither of these jacked-up adventure mobiles has a locking rear differential. Hmmm.
"We didn’t set out to build a racer or pre-runner or rock crawler, or yet another version of the ultimate 4WD tourer," said Wayne Boatwright, head of the Isuzu Team D-Max stunt crew.
"It would have been easy to bolt on many accessories but we wanted to go our own way, so most of the build; the guards, bull bars, bonnet, brakes, suspension and chassis modifications are all in-house custom work.