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India-spec Isuzu MU-X interior spied

27th Jan 2017 1:15 pm

The SUV is expected to be assembled at Isuzu's Andhra Pradesh plant; cabin to share components with the D-Max V-Cross.

Isuzu is preparing to launch the new MU-X seven-seat SUV in India in the coming months. The SUV as been spied testing here numerous times.

The MU-X shares much of its styling with the D-Max V-Cross pick-up with a front fascia that's near identical, but the cab is now extended to cover the pick-up’s flat-bed and it features a third row of seats and added creature comforts. The rear styling, though, is unique with split horizontal tail-lamps and new bumper.

Interior pictures of a test mule show the cabin to be similar to V-Cross' with a dashboard inspired from that of the Trailblazer. Key differences include seats finished in leather, the inclusion of an automatic gearbox and roof mounted air-con vents for rear occupants.

Based on the Isuzu I-GRIP platform, the butch-looking MU-X comes with two powertrain options in international markets – a  150hp 1.99-litre (Codename: RZ4E-TC) and a 4JJ1-TCX 177hp 3.0-litre diesel engine with the motors paired to either a manual or automatic gearbox. It is unclear as to which engine will make it to India, though, considering the test mule, one of the variants could be a four-wheel-drive automatic. Rear-wheel drive and manual-gearbox-equipped variants are also expected.

While the Trailblazer is sold as a fully imported unit, sources tell us that the MU-X will be locally assembled at Isuzu's Sri City plant in AP. This facility also currently conducts local assembly of the Isuzu D-Max and the V-Cross lifestyle pick-up truck which is a sister model to the MU-X.

Key rivals to the MU-X include the Ford Endeavour, the Mitsubishi Pajero Sport and the new Toyota Fortuner. Taking into account the aggressive pricing for the V-Cross, a locally assembled MU-X could severely undercut its rivals and may set a new pricing benchmark in the segment.

The Isuzu MU-7 may not have found many takers in India, but the new MU-X, with its keen pricing and expected equipment list, could be a viable option for the Indian market.

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