Isuzu has revamped its Rodeo pick-up with a new diesel engine, a new five-speed manual gearbox, beefed-up brakes and mild changes to the exterior and interior styling.
Launched at 2006’s Paris Motor Show, the newcomer is due here next month (April).
A new four-cylinder common rail 2.5-litre diesel replaces both the old 2.5-litre and the 3.0-litre diesel previously available.
Maximum power of 135bhp kicks in at 3,600rpm and is 35bhp more than the departing 2.5-litre could muster. It beats the old 3.0-litre too, albeit by just 5bhp.
Top torque of 217lb-ft bites at 1,800rpm.
That equates to 50lb-ft more than the previous 2.5-litre and a modest 10lb-ft more than the 3.0-litre.
A 3.0-litre diesel is on offer in other markets along with an automatic gearbox, but there are no plans to market them in Britain.
Instead, importer Isuzu (UK) is likely to offer Rodeo’s 2.5-litre with an optional Prodrive conversion that will boost output to 162bhp.
Rodeo will initially be sold solely as a 4x4 five-seater four-door double-cab with a maximum payload capacity of 1,075kg.
Access to the cargo box is by means of a tailgate that can either be locked horizontally or dropped down completely, and the cargo box features four load-lashing points.
Other models are in the pipeline, including 4x2 single and double-cabs.
ABS brakes come as standard on the 4x4 double-cab, along with Electronic Brakeforce Distribution and a rear limited slip differential. Electronic Stability Programme is not fitted and is not available as an option.
Exterior alterations include a new bonnet, bumper, wings and grille.
Rodeo is now equipped with high-intensity projector-type headlamps that Isuzu says offer 50% better illumination than the headlamps previously fitted.
Inside you’ll find a new instrument panel, new air vents, a new centre console, new cloth trim for the seats and doors, and a new steering wheel.
While the importer has yet to make a final decision on equipment, the 4x4 is likely to be offered with three different levels of specification, with a CD player plus driver’s airbag as standard.