October 11, 2019 will be a very important date for Isuzu. They will be ushering in a new generation of their D-Max pickup, one of the most, if not, the most significant vehicle in their product portfolio. With that in mind, Isuzu will soon be entering the next decade with a thoroughly redesigned pickup.
From the spy shots we saw months ago, Isuzu appears to be taking an evolutionary approach to the full model change. We see the familiar U-shaped LED daytime running lights, as well as the signature wide Isuzu grill. Also noteworthy is the bed, which is now taller meaning more items can be stacked on board. But while it could look more evolutionary that revolutionary, reports are saying that it will be totally different under the skin.
The 2020 Isuzu D-Max will have a totally new frame. That means we can also expect its suspension components to have been re-engineered at the same time. Given that it will also share its chassis with the Mazda BT-50, currently one of the largest in its class, we might see a substantial growth in the 2020 D-Max's dimensions. This is especially important for Isuzu as pickups have gotten bigger since the launch of the current model, which is all the way back in 2012.
There is, however, still a big question mark lingering over the 2020 D-Max's hood. It's more than likely that Isuzu will be retaining the 1.9-liter RZ4E option since it's their newest engine, which was introduced in 2017. The 2020 D-Max might get a larger capacity version of the RZ4E, and it has been said that it might be under 3.0-liters.
The current top-spec engine, the 4JJ1, has been around since 2004 and the 4J engine itself traces its roots all the way back to 1985. With the RZ generation engines coming in, Isuzu might introduce a compact but more powerful mill than their 4J engine.
With the all-new D-Max coming soon, does this mean we'll see a second-generation mu-X soon? Given that most automakers would launch an SUV version of their all-new pickup after, it sounds more than likely to happen in this case. If Isuzu were to follow what they did back in 2012, the second-generation Mu-X could be revealed a year or two after the 2020 D-Max's global debut.