Isuzu has proven once again that the D-Max is one of their most durable, reliable, and rugged vehicles on the road today. If last week saw Isuzu bring out a Superute race truck specifically tuned for the circuit, this time they have an off-road machine that won in its class.
Just recently, the automaker won first place in the T1.2 diesel four-wheel drive class at the 11th Africa Eco Race. Isuzu was able to edge out other brands like Land Rover, BMW, as well as Gaz to take victory during the 15-day, 6,022 km grueling endurance race. Driving the winning race-truck was the formiddable team dubbed 'Enduring 2000 Racing' who was backed by Isuzu Thailand.
With the sweltering heat, sandy dunes, as well as trechearous terrain, surely Isuzu had to vastly modify the D-Max for the race right? Believe it or not, Isuzu kept the race-winning D-Max mechanically stock. But it does not get the 3.0-liter 4JJ1-TCX turbo-diesel. Instead it gets the smaller 1.9-liter RZ4E which pushes out 150 PS and 350 Nm of torque. And, unlike the RZ4E offered here, the race-truck comes with shift-on-the-fly 4WD in order to keep the D-Max mobile through any terrrain.
The only modifications that Isuzu made for the pickup truck are the: off-road tires, aftermarket snorkel, LED lightbar on the hood, as well as a roll cage to keep the occupants safe should the D-Max roll over. Talk about showing how capable the pickup truck is by running it in a race without any engine / powertrain mods.
So the Isuzu D-Max won in its class but did it take overall victory? Sadly no as it only finished 18th overall. But for George Wallis, Isuzu UK Head of Marketing, a win is still a win and it only goes to show that Isuzu products have the capacity to be durable and take home victories.
“Winning our class in this formidable rally yet again demonstrates the Isuzu D-Max’s performance, capability and durability. It also re-enforces the reasons why the award-winning Isuzu D-Max can’t stop picking up awards,” said Wallis.
If you happen to see a RZ4E D-Max on the road, or happen to own one, be glad that it can take on endurance races and stands a chance of actually winning