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This is the new Isuzu D-Max 2020: More power, more tech will take the fight to the Toyota HiLux and Ford Ranger

The 2020 Isuzu D-Max has been unveiled, with more power, more tech and a tougher look heading the changes for the popular workhorse. 

But in good news for fans of the ute's heavy-duty 3.0-litre diesel engine, the tow-happy powertrain lives on. In fact, it's now even more powerful, thanks to a change that sees outputs grow to 140kW and 450Nm.

It’s the D-Max’s first full update in eight years, but the changes detailed by Isuzu in Japan transform the workhorse ute from one of the oldest in its segment to one of the most modern.

According to Isuzu, the D-Max has been designed under a “beyond the pick-up truck” theme, with research suggesting customers (specifically those in Thailand) will swap out of passenger cars, station wagons and other, more-rugged utes into the D-Max.

With that in mind, then, the 2020 model has been designed with a tough but modern appearance that adds front and rear LED DRLs, LED headlights, a new-look front-end and a redesigned rear.

Read More About Isuzu D-Max

Inside, top-spec vehicles make use of a 9.0-inch touchscreen multimedia unit, home to both Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, while a redesigned interior is meant to make driver and passenger feel like they’re in a more modern feeling vehicle, rather than a traditional workhorse.

Under the bonnet, the 3.0-litre engine has been re-tuned for bigger outputs (140kW at 3600 and 450Nm at 1600rpm) while updated suspension, faster steering, bigger brake rotors and a wading depth increase to 800mm complete a fairly comprehensive mechanical overhaul.

Preliminary specs have the crew cab models measuring in at 5265mm in length, 1870mm in width and 1790mm in height, and tipping the scales at 1890kg.

While pricing and specification is still being determined for Australia, we do know that keyless entry, push-button start, voice recognition, auto headlights, dual-zone climate and front and rear parking sensors join the standard kit list on top-spec models internationally, while blind-spot monitoring, rear cross-traffic alert, round-body parking sensors, hill start assist and hill descent control join the safety kit. 

The 2020 D-Max is expected to be revealed in the metal on October 19, which would see it arrive in Australia next year.

Andrew Chesterton
Contributing Journalist
Andrew Chesterton should probably hate cars. From his hail-damaged Camira that looked like it had spent a hard life parked at the end of Tiger Woods' personal driving range, to the Nissan Pulsar Reebok that shook like it was possessed by a particularly mean-spirited demon every time he dared push past 40km/h, his personal car history isn't exactly littered with gold. But that seemingly endless procession of rust-savaged hate machines taught him something even more important; that cars are more than a collection of nuts, bolts and petrol. They're your ticket to freedom, a way to unlock incredible experiences, rolling invitations to incredible adventures. They have soul. And so, somehow, the car bug still bit. And it bit hard. When "Chesto" started his journalism career with News Ltd's Sunday and Daily Telegraph newspapers, he covered just about everything, from business to real estate, courts to crime, before settling into state political reporting at NSW Parliament House. But the automotive world's siren song soon sounded again, and he begged anyone who would listen for the opportunity to write about cars. Eventually they listened, and his career since has seen him filing car news, reviews and features for TopGear, Wheels, Motor and, of course, CarsGuide, as well as many, many others. More than a decade later, and the car bug is yet to relinquish its toothy grip. And if you ask Chesto, he thinks it never will.
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