Isuzu D-Max V-Cross

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Isuzu D-Max V-Cross, 2024, front, off road
Isuzu D-Max V-Cross, 2024, front
Isuzu D-Max V-Cross, 2024, nose
Isuzu D-Max V-Cross, 2024, side
Isuzu D-Max V-Cross, 2024, tail
Isuzu D-Max V-Cross, 2024, rear
Isuzu D-Max V-Cross, 2024, rear
Isuzu D-Max V-Cross, 2024, interior, front seats

THE V-Cross has been Isuzu's best-selling D-Max since it became the brand's flagship in 2021 so it was no surprise when the manufacturer announced in August 2023 that it would now be focusing on the lifestyle and adventure market, expanding beyond traditional work-based pick-up segments, and instead embracing a wider audience of adventure seekers, outdoor enthusiasts, and thrill-seekers.

This followed a slight update in April 2023, when, together with the rest of the range, the D-Max V-Cross was updated with fresh cosmetic changes to maintain its appeal.

The range-topper received significant visual enhancements, including a modernised front grille, a new alloy wheel design, an updated upholstery design, and new colour options.

Nothing else really needed changing. It already had the blend of ruggedness and quality features which appeal to those seeking a vehicle that complements their active and adventurous lifestyles.

A substantial beast, the revised pick-up pick-up now features Gun Metal exterior styling, leather upholstery, heated front seats, a nine-inch multifunction colour touchscreen, eight-way adjustable driver's seat, Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, eight speakers, and reversing camera as well as front and rear parking sensors.

With a 4x4 powertrain and a rear differential lock, it also boasts exceptional off-road capabilities. You can trust me on that.

And, if you want more proof, In July 2023, the Japanese manufacturer sold 95 per cent more Adventure models - of which the V-Cross is part - compared to the same month in 2021.

The sales of the model in 2023 exceeded the total sales for 2022, and 2021, making it the fastest-growing model in the range.

Standard equipment also includes automatic headlights with high-beam assist, automatic wipers, speed-sensitive power steering, DAB radio and 18-inch alloy wheels. The steering wheel is also height and reach adjustable across the range.

A new rear bumper has an integrated rear step which makes it easier to access the load area, and a tailgate damper is also standard.

Advanced Driver Assist Systems (ADAS) are now standard on all models, including autonomous emergency braking and lane departure warning and prevention. After driving at a fake wall, I can attest how well the emergency braking works.

And, for the first time in the pick-up segment, rear cross traffic alert, blind spot monitor and emergency lane keeping are fitted on all double cabs.

With the ADAS, and an even stronger chassis, theD-Max became the first pick-up to achieve the maximum five-star rating in the latest Euro NCAP tests, important if you do want to use it as a family 4x4.

Although the length of the new D-Max is slightly less than its predecessor, its wheelbase is 30mm longer which has allowed for a larger and more spacious cabin from which rear seat occupants benefit most. The B-Pillar is positioned 25mm further forward which means the rear door aperture has increased, allowing for easier access.

The V-Crossretains Isuzu's punchy 1.9-litre turbodiesel engine introduced in 2017, which delivers 162bhp and an ample 360Nm of torque. It completes the 0-62mph sprint in a leisurely 13 seconds and can go onto a maximum of 112mph.

This is matched with an eight-speed automatic gearbox or a six-speed manual, which will save you £1,800.

It officially returns 30.7mpg for the double cab auto and 241g/km of CO2 emissions.

It offers the usual workhorse practicalities Isuzu customers have become accustomed to, with a one-tonne payload and up to 3.5 tonnes towing capacity. All 4x4 models are equipped with trailer sway control that uses sensors to detect the onset of trailer swing and reduces vehicle speed if sway is identified. Hill Descent Control is also standard on all variants.

The four-wheel drive shift- on-the-fly still has three configuration settings but a new actuator now provides much faster transfer between the different drives. And, while the D-Maxhas always been good off-road, the rear diff-lock makes it so much better. Even its wading depth is now a class-leading 800mm.

The speed-sensitive electronic power steering also means the D-Maxis much better on the road. At lower speeds - where most working pick-ups spend most of their time - the steering is noticeably lighter, making it easier to manoeuvre in tight spaces. At higher speeds, it stiffens up nicely, helping stability and driveability.

£44,323 (£36,999 CVOTR)

162bhp, 1,898cc, four-cylinder turbo diesel engine driving all four wheels via an eight-speed automatic gearbox

112mph

13 seconds

30.7mpg miles

40

241g/km

37%

5yrs/125,000 miles

4

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