ISUZU Ute and its D-MAX stay true to form, delivering the 2020 D-MAX X-Runner, with a swag of genuine accessories, exterior highlights and a robust drive train synonymous with the brand.
The D-MAX X-Runner is based on the range-topping LS-T 4×4 ute chassis and receives a black decal package, metallic grey grille with signature X-Runner red badge, grey fog lamp surrounds, side steps and a satin black sports bar with integrated stop light.
It also gets an under rail tub liner made from a strong and durable polyethylene which will protect the tray for life. Sporting 18-inch machine finish alloy wheels the red accent centre caps, it delivers a comfortable ride on its 255/60/18 Toyo Open Country tyres.
Here’s a fun fact. Isuzu engineers have in recent years put the D-Max through wind tunnel testing at the same facility used by the Japanese bullet trains to ensure the best aerodynamic shape possible.
When fuel efficiency and minimal cabin noise are a priority at a customer level, one can see why engineers work hard in these areas.
You’ll either love or hate the interior. Featuring red inserts in the door cards and dash, with red badging on the steering wheel, you’d want to hope it grows on you. It could have benefited from a black or carbon look to show off a modern and functional cabin.
The red stitching in the red and black accented leather seats are a nice addition though, and the seats are comfy to boot. The cabin offers plenty of leg room in the front and rear seats and would house five adults comfortably on any road trip.
If there’s a downside, it’s the fact rear seat passengers don’t get their own air vents. The X-Runner scuff plates are a neat addition over the standard items, and the side steps are sturdy and functional.
From the driver’s seat, the passive entry and push button start are welcome features. The 8-inch touchscreen is easy to use and features GPS navigation, reverse camera and rear park assist. The Bluetooth is crisp and clear, and iPod and MP3 connection is also on offer.
Cup holders and storage are plentiful. The cabin also features USB ports and an 8-speaker stereo system. The X-Runner, like all its relatives, misses out on telescopic steering adjustment, Android Auto and Apple CarPlay.
We’d been told about issues with the driver’s seat height and heavy steering at low speed, but we couldn’t agree with either of those complaints. At 187cm and 100kg, this author found the driving position comfortable and ergonomically sound.
The indestructible 3.0-litre turbo diesel produces a robust 130kW of power and 430Nm of torque from its super high pressure common rail direct injection engine. That translates to an efficient 7.9-litres/100km combined fuel consumption from the 76-litre fuel tank.
You can expect 900km to the tank, which is pretty damn good. And while we’re not seasoned off-roaders, we do understand a few important figures when considering hitting the tracks.
With 235mm of ground clearance, a 22.7 degree departure angle, 22.2 degree ramp over and a 30 degree approach, the D-MAX X-Runner makes for a very capable rig off road, even in standard trim.
Coupled with down hill assist and dual range 4×4, the genuine low range transfer case is a handy ally. The X-Runner enjoys a 1024kg payload, 750kg unbraked tow capacity and 3,500kg braked towing capacity.
Keep in mind its 5950kg gross combined mass and its 2026kg kerb weight if you’re considering a big haul. While a 3.5t tow bar kit is an optional extra, talk to your dealer about installing a genuine electric brake module. It will be money well spent.
The X-Runner comes in two colour choices, Silky Pearl White and Magnetic Red. We tested the Silky Pearl White and really liked the colour. It’s attractively priced at $54,990 drive away for the 6-speed auto.
The limited edition 2020 Isuzu D-MAX X-Runner is backed by a 6-year/150,000km warranty, six years roadside assistance, and has a 7-year capped price servicing program.
Overall, it’s a well priced, robust machine that does all the heavy chores with minimal fuss. With a 5-star ANCAP safety rating and compliance with Euro5 emission standards, you’d be doing the environment a favour by making the upgrade.
Our 2020 Isuzu D-MAX X-Runner was provided by Isuzu Ute Australia. To find out more, contact your local Isuzu dealer.