The Isuzu Kb has been a firm favorite with us for a while because it feels right at home when you put it to work. While it is still a great lifestyle bakkie like most of the rest, it’s definitely not up there when Bakkies in the last 5 years or so have made a giant leap in terms overall comfort, giving you that car like drive. While this is good, this has been to the deficit by removing the workhorse capability that most bakkie owners wanted from the start. Nearly all of the new bakkies have gone soft, with their luxurious interior and interior that will easily scruff. When it comes to refinement, power, and specifications, even with the top level models, they still feel happier when working, rather than playing or as the family’s luxury Bakkie.
This X-Rider which was originally an add-on model to the Hi-Rider range was supposed to be a limited run model, but it’s been well received, so they’ve decided to add it to the range.
The exterior has been visually enhanced with a unique black and red trim bumper with projector style halogen headlights and LED daylight running lamps. The sides feature tubular style side steps and the load bay would not be complete without a roll bar. The alloys have been increased to 18” for appearance purposes. They’ve also wrapped them in General Grabber AT tires, which I think suits the overall theme of the bakkie.
The interior is leather wrapped with a decent amount of X-Rider insignia that reminds you that this is actually an X-rider. In my opinion, they could have done without this. The fascia has been restyled with a new radio, but it’s fairly basic but does have Bluetooth and USB. There are also steering wheel controls present.
The 2.5 oil burner is unchanged and still makes a 100kw and 320nm. The Kb delivers strong low-end performance and decent fuel economy which adds to about 9l /100km in the real world. The gearshifts do feel notchy when changing down to overtake, but this all reminds me how far we’ve come in this segment. The Kb still feels like a man’s bakkie, you know like Bakkies should be.
The Isuzu, while being on the affordable side of the market in terms of pricing, offers good looks and solid value if you are looking for a workhorse that can also double up as the family car. Sure there is some feature it might lack, but at this price-point, you really can’t complain, especially when backed by a superb after sales service and warranty. The recommended retail on the KB X-Rider 2.5 4×2 is R388 400 and has a 5 year 120 000km warranty and a 3 year 90 000km service plan. For more info, check out isuzu.co.za