New Isuzu D-MAX LS-A Takes On Premier Spin on Scenic Camiguin
Following its introduction to the local market last August 29, the Isuzu D-Max LS-A showed it mettle to select members of the motoring media to roam the scenic spots in the beautiful island of Camiguin. Last October 10, motoring scribes, together with IPC executives headed by President Hajime Koso, tested the latest iteration of the Isuzu D-MAX pickup a week ago at the the land of 14 volcanoes. Camiguin, the country's second smallest island province (next only to Batanes), is nevertheless mountainous in its general terrain--ideal for a diesel utility workhorse such as the D-MAX LS-A to showcase its 'tough-enough-for-anything' functionality. Camiguin also offers a rich mix of natural attractions and cultural treasures, which perfectly complements the pickup's unique combination of modern design, timeless heritage, and world-class engineering. Day One of the New D-MAX LS-A test drive included the 30-minute drive from the provincial capital Mambajao to Taguines Lagoon, followed by a sumptuous seafood lunch at the nearby J&A Fishpen Resort and Restaurant. From there, a 40-minute drive to the island's interior brought the group to the Tres Marias Hill, a trio of domes dotting the island’s most prominent geological feature, the towering and still active stratovolcano Mount Hibok-Hibok. A 10-minute drive on unpaved roads then led to the cold yet refreshing Tuasan Falls. Merienda time for the group was well spent, gorging on the province's most popular fruit at the Lanzones Farm, 25 minutes from the falls and a mere two minutes from the next stop in the itinerary, the Sunken Cemetery, where the remnants of a graveyard and a town destroyed and sunk into the sea by the explosive birth of nearby Mount Vulcan in the 1870s provided the solemn foreground to a magnificent sunset. Day Two of the trip saw the group spend the morning on the powder-white Sand Bar, a mere 15-minute speedboat ride on the clear blue Bohol Sea. In his welcome remarks during the overnight stay at the Paras Beach Resort, Koso explained why the New Isuzu D-MAX LS-A is the perfect partner for such road trips. "The Isuzu D-MAX LS-A with Blue Power Diesel engine is our answer to the clamor of our customers for reliable, hardworking but fuel-efficient vehicles. This represents nearly a century of Isuzu’s experience and innovation in the design, engineering, and workmanship of diesel-powered utility vehicles. The D-MAX LS-A is infused, as well, with features that address the demands of a market that value both hard work and play, business with leisure," Koso said Robert Carlos, IPC Product Planning Department Head, then enumerated the highlights of the D-MAX LS-A. The D-MAX LS-A is powered by the powerful and fuel-efficient 4JJ1-TCX 3.0-liter four-cylinder In-line Blue Power Diesel engine with VGS turbo intercooler that generates around 175 hp and 380 Nm of torque. Available in the 4×2 and 4×4 MT and AT variants, the D-MAX LS-A drivetrain consists of either the six-speed automatic transmission with sequential shift or the six-speed manual transmission with gear shift indicator. Comfortable, stable, and confident handling is achieved with the rack-and-pinion power assist and tilt-adjust steering, independent double-wishbone with coil spring and stabilizer for the front suspension, and semi-elliptical leaf spring for the rear. For its exterior, the D-MAX LS-A is distinctive with the aggressive-looking very dark gray radiator grille with engine hood garnish, front bumper guard and one step type black rear bumper, power-folding side-view mirrors in dark gray finish with LED integrated turn signal, and LED rear combination lamp. The under-rail bedliner, cargo extender, roof rail, fender lip-type over fender, and side molding all come standard. The stylish and functional character of the D-MAX LS-A continues in the interior’s electroluminescent-type instrument meters with Multi-Information Display (MID), 8-inch full-touch monitor/ CD/DVD/Tuner/Bluetooth and iPod connectivity/Aux-in/USB/MP3 Compatible/AV-in/TPMS ready/USB-link/WiFi display, navigation system, and three-spoke leather-wrapped steering wheel with hands-free function and audio controls. The bucket seats with adjustable headrest, back pockets and convenience hook (1st row) and the 60/40 split cushion second-row seats with two adjustable headrests and center armrest are all wrapped in leather. The D-MAX LS-A is equipped with numerous safety features: Dual SRS airbags, child seat tethers for the 2nd row, side door impact beams, Anti-lock Brake System (ABS), Electronic Brake Force Distribution (EBD), Brake Assist (BA), Brake Override System (BOS), Hill Start Assist (HSA), Hill Descent Control (HDC), Child-proof rear door locks and reverse camera. For occupant comfort and convenience, the D-MAX LS-A is equipped with the auto-climate control air conditioning system, passive entry/push start-stop system, 12V accessory socket, three USB charging ports, 15 storage compartments and 10 cup holders, and tow hooks for the front driver and passenger side and one at the rear (for the LS-A 4×4 variants).