Make: Isuzu
Model: MU-X
Variant: LS-T
Engine/Transmission: 3.0 litre turbo diesel/6 speed automatic
Price: Around $65800 drive away


The MU-X from Isuzu is a strange beast. Like many ‘ute based’ SUVs, such as Ford’s Everest, Toyota’s Fortuner, and Mitsubishi’s Pajero Sport, for the money, the MU-X is rough and basic. Only when you scratch beneath the surface do you find hidden value in features that weren’t at first obvious.

The 3.0 litre turbo diesel is a rattler but has tonnes of poke and, experience has shown, will just go for ever. A modest tune (140kw/450Nm) and features like the chain driven timing gear will deliver decades of reliable service. The Aisin gearbox is fairly smooth but lacks the sophistication of some of the very best 10 speeders but the old school shift on the fly 2WD to 4WD system is well proven. The standard snorkel diff breathers also point to where the Isuzu’s true strength lay – not in the suburbs of Mosman or Ascot but in White Cliffs and Fraser Island.


While Isuzu should absolutely be praised for raising the ute/SUV safety bar (D-Max and MU-X are both five star winners), the cynic in me points out that much of this tech is of the most basic variety. The cruise control is radar active, but creeps up on downhills and lags on uphills. The rear view camera is large, but the resolution is well below the very best. The Rear Cross Traffic Alert is a great feature but seemingly beeps in circumstances I’m not used to hearing it, but that said, better to have it than not I guess!

All of these complaints sum up life with the MU-X perfectly – it’s fully loaded … but in the most basic way. At least with Isuzu, I think this has more to do with wanting to keep things simple than penny pinching.


In its natural environment, the simple old school nature of the MU-X is so much fun. It’s almost like a perfectly restored older model but with the safety net of impressive safety features. It’s a very rewarding car, celebrating simplicity and grit. I really liked it.


Unfortunately, this love did not spread to the infotainment system. It’s like a Isuzu sourced it from Tandy in 1997! The rear camera’s resolution is so low that it may as well be black and white. It’s junk. Still, it’s easily fixed with a high end aftermarket option but you shouldn’t really need to do this given the $65k price of admission.


Take the time to try more sophisticated (and expensive) alternatives to make sure you can handle the somewhat agricultural character of the MU-X.