The long-awaited third-generation Isuzu D-Max is finally out. It’s a totally new pickup truck from the ground up, so many people are curious as to how exactly it differs from the previous second-generation model. Well, it obviously has evolved in terms of styling, but what about technical specifications and on-board tech?
Let’s find out by comparing the old one and the new one side by side.
2021 Isuzu D-Max Old vs New: Exterior
When it comes to looks, the new D-Max is sharper-looking than the old one. It also offers a better set of exterior amenities. This is especially true with the top-spec LS-E model, which now has LED lights all around.
Going back to exterior appearance, the new D-Max becomes more beastly-looking than it was before. The fang-line dual slats on the grille have made a return. Combined with the angular front fascia, it definitely has more macho appeal than the old one.
Compare the front of the old (left) and new (right) D-Max using this slider
Towards the sides, the new Isuzu D-Max has been designed to be more aerodynamic, and that’s evident from the sleeker, rakish roofline. The sides also feature a more aggressive-looking set of over-fenders, and the top-spec models now ride on 18-inch alloys with a different, unique-looking design.
Compare that to the old D-Max, which rode on a smaller, more conventional-looking set of 17-inch wheels. The previous model also had smaller fender flares, and it didn’t gain blacked-out trim pieces until the LS-A variant was updated back in 2020.
A comparison of the side profile of the old and new D-Max
Size-wise, the new Isuzu-made truck now measures 5,277 mm in length. That’s 18 mm shorter compared to the old model. It is, however, 1,880 mm wide, which is 20 mm more than the old one’s width of 1,860 mm.
Moreover, the wheelbase of the new D-Max now measures 3,125 mm and that’s longer by 30 m than the old one’s 3,095 mm wheelbase. And lastly, the new third-gen D-Max also has a ground clearance of 240 mm, which is 5 mm more compared to the old model. Well, except for the Boondock variants which had 247 mm.
2021 Isuzu D-Max Old vs New: Interior
For interiors, Isuzu decided to make the third-gen D-Max more up-market. It now features a wealth of soft-touch surfaces and even more comfort-oriented features. The previous, aging layout of the dashboard was also replaced by a sleeker more modern arrangement.
The circular cluster of air-conditioning controls is now gone, and what we have now is a set of tactile toggle switches lined just below the 10.1-inch touchscreen.
The new D-Max's interior
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Speaking of the touchscreen, it is far larger than the old one’s eight-inch unit, and it's more capable too. For starters, the new head unit now has better smartphone integration, and a more robust eight-piece speaker set (LS-E).
The old D-Max in comparison only had Bluetooth, and six-speakers at the most. Both models, however, do get a sufficient amount of USB ports, and accessory charging ports.
For the driver, the new D-Max provides an electronically adjustable driver’s seat. The previous version had that, but it offered less adjustability. The new model also has adaptive cruise control, whereas the outgoing model didn’t have cruise control at all.
The interior of the previous-gen Isuzu D-Max
Last but not least regarding the interior is the new steering wheel. It now hosts more buttons, and it features a sportier, more compact look than its bulky-looking predecessor.
2021 Isuzu D-Max Old vs New: Engine
Under the hood, the new D-Max either gets the new 3.0-liter 4JJ3-TCX engine or the old and familiar 1.9-liter RZ4E-TC. The larger engine makes 188 horsepower and 450 Nm, which is quite a bit more than the old 3.0-liter engine’s 177 horsepower and 380 Nm.
As for the 1.9-liter RZ4E-TC, power output remains the same at 148 horsepower and 350 Nm of torque.
The new D-Max also gets a new six-speed automatic transmission with sequential shift. Like the old one, a six-speed manual gearbox is still available.
While the interior has become more premium, the work capabilities of the new D-Max remain on-par with the outgoing model. It can still tow up to 3.5 tons, but the payload capacity has shrunk down to 970 kg. That’s a lot of weight, but note that the outgoing model’s 1024 kg max payload is 54 kilograms more.
The new D-Max's 3.0-liter 4JJ3-TCX engine
The trade-off with the slighter lesser max payload, however, is a more comfortable, and more stable ride. This was achieved by providing the new D-Max's rear leaf suspension more dampening. Towards the front, the double-wishbone coil springs were also tuned for better handling and stability.
Last but not the least, the rear drum brakes and front discs on the new D-Max are far larger than the old model’s brake set. A set of larger brakes of course mean more stopping power.
Our 2021 Isuzu D-Max quick drive review should give you more insights about the new Isuzu model. Our car guide section was also updated and it already shows the specifications and prices of all the third-gen D-Max's variants.
For more old vs new comparisons, car industry news, and car reviews, keep it here on Philkotse.com.
Know more about Isuzu D-Max 2021
Japanese diesel powerhouse Isuzu Philippines offers the D-Max as its entry in the midsize pickup truck segment. This tough workhorse from the Japanese carmaker is designed to take on any road. Isuzu D-Max got the reliability of its predecessors and the Fuego. However, the current pickup truck is equipped with more modern features that perfectly fit the Filipino lifestyle. Additionally, Isuzu D-max also has a remarkable rear bed size that can carry a multitude of heavy and large items. The Isuzu pickup truck can also be optioned with a set of accessories such as camper shells, bed covers, and many more. Isuzu D-Max also comes in a commercial vehicle layout. It can also be configured as the cab and chassis variant. This configuration can be had with an enclosed van type rear end, passenger layout, bed, or other job-specific configuration. Isuzu Philippines offers the third-generation D-Max with a couple of engine and transmission options. The first option is a 1.9L turbo diesel that produces 148 horsepower and 350 Nm of torque. For car buyers who are looking for more power, they can opt for the bigger mill, which is the 3.0L engine that pumps out 187 horsepower and 450 Nm of torque. These two engines are equipped with the brand’s BluePower technology for Euro 4 compliance and better fuel efficiency. Both engines can be paired with either six-speed automatic or six-speed manual transmission.
Cesar G.B. Miguel