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ISUZU has once again underlined its fuel efficiency supremacy when four units of the amazing Isuzu D-MAX pick-up trucks performed the unbelievable by making it from Bangkok to Singapore, a distance of 1,809km using less than full contents of its 76-litre fuel tank.

Acknowledged as the undisputed leader in fuel efficiency having claimed the Asian Auto Fuel Efficiency Award for pick-up trucks six years in a row, it was no surprise then that all four units of the Isuzu D-MAX achieved the feat that clearly stamps its authority in the field.

The flag off ceremony in Bangkok.
The flag off ceremony in Bangkok.

This historic achievement is the first for this second-generation Isuzu D-MAX, eclipsing the previous version’s record in 2011 when it completed a similar drive from Bangkok to Melaka, a distance of 1,600km.

The cars and the drive were once again under stringent observation by an Automobile Association of Malaysia (AAM) officer who also verified upon completion of the Dura-Miles Challenge that all the vehicles were according to manufacturer’s specifications.

The Bukit Kayu Hitam immigration check point.
The Bukit Kayu Hitam immigration check point.

Significantly, the four Isuzu D-MAX – a pair each of 2.5-litre and 3.0-litre models with manual and automatic transmissions – all featured similar selectable 4×4 drivetrains that have long been branded as a fuel guzzling features.

“While four-wheel drive vehicles offer highly practical solutions to active lifestyle seekers, it suffers from a bad reputation for being heavy on fuel. However, due to Isuzu’s amazing engineering and remarkable power balance, the Isuzu D-MAX is able to offer uncompromised performance and fuel efficiency to every motorist,” said Isuzu Malaysia executive director Daisuke Ishida who was on hand at the Singapore Discovery Centre to welcome the convoy.

The convoy enters Singapore.
The convoy enters Singapore.

Earlier, the quartet were flagged off from the Isuzu Ung Nguan Tai dealership in Bangkok by Ishida, AAM Committee Member Ahmed Ismail, Tripetch Isuzu Sales Co. Ltd senior vice president Panadta Chenavasin and Ung Nguan Tai Isuzu Sales Deputy managing director Tanavit Pitaksith.

The cars were driven through extreme conditions including 40-degree ambient temperatures through much of Thailand and faced thunderstorms in the evenings in Malaysia. Throughout the drive, the drivers kept the air-conditioning on to fight the sweltering heat.

An AAM official breaking the seal in Singapore at the conclusion of the challenge.
An AAM official breaking the seal in Singapore at the conclusion of the challenge.

Isuzu Malaysia’s senior manager in the Product Planning and Brand Dept Wan Zaqi Zacary further attributed the basic yet sophisticated design of the Isuzu D-MAX as a contributor to its success.

“Isuzu engineers placed a premium on aerodynamics as evidenced in their use of the bullet train wind tunnel to develop the current shape of the D-MAX,” said Zaqi.

Remarkably, the same fuel efficient Isuzu D-MAX has won accolades in various other fields including Vehicle of the Year having survived the grueling Borneo Safari 4×4 challenge, consecutive NST-Maybank Pick-Up Truck of the Year titles and Asian Auto Best Value For Money Pick-up Truck to name a few.

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