As predicted, all thoughts about the D-Max being too large have been blown away here in Miami. This is a place where everything, from the Club Chicken Sandwich to the doorman are considerably bigger than back home in Blighty.
After visiting the Formula E electric car race HQ this morning, I foolishly decided to go for a walk around downtown Miami in the afternoon. I walked for an hour and got absolutely, completely nowhere. All I experienced was the heat from the sun and the exhaust fumes of pick-up trucks that would dwarf the Isuzu.
There are no qualms about driving pick-ups in the city either. Single and double cabs make up most of the traffic jams. I didn’t see one Isuzu but my favourite ute was one with what looked like a pair of bull’s balls dangle from beneath the rear bumper.
How can the Isuzu possibly compete with that!?
I’m off to drive a Formula E car tomorrow. Once they have shoehorned me into the cockpit…
Just heading off to Miami. The D-Max is parked up at Heathrow – the next time I see a doublecab it will no doubt be some whopping American beast loaded with a 5-0-litre petrol guzzler and driven by the son of a preacher man…
For now at least, the Isuzu is big enough for the outskirts of Slough. With chunky alloy wheels, side steps and a roof covering the rear load area, the D-Max is big enough for me.
The question I can’t answer is whether or not I could live with a vehicle like this. It’s definitely a step up from most of the mundane and ubiquitous SUV clogging up our roads at the moment.
But I struggled to get used to the unrefined and jittery ride, the noisy cabin and the lacklustre performance. No amount of leather trim and infotainment will cure that.
More thoughts tomorrow when I’ve had time to ponder the Isuzu on the US flight…
The D-Max Utah may have more street cred than a high street SUV (I’m thinking Skoda Yeti, Ford Kuga here) but it doesn’t drive anywhere near as well.
And that is the stumping block of all pick-ups – they are basically blinged up utility vehicles presented as something altogether more user-friendly.
The best way to illustrate this is in the cabin when you fire up the 2.5-litre diesel. The roar invades the cockpit and no amount of leather, electrically adjustable heated seats, air con and sat nav is going to hide that fact.
While the steering is more precise than you might imagine, the Isuzu takes a long time to get up to cruising speeds. It does hold its own on motorways though.
The Utah model is an expensive upgrade from the basic D-Max so it’s vital you choose the right Isuzu to fit your lifestyle. And part of that lifestyle must include a reasonable amount of off-road lugging to make it seem worthwhile…
The D-Max is the first doublecab we’ve tested at Car Couture. The Isuzu is a good place to start because it has achieved excellent reviews and is the most ‘car-like’ of all pick-ups on the market.
Driving the Utah around today, it’s amazing how many doublecabs I’ve seen on the road. People have realized that they offer the perfect mix of workmanlike practicality, with enough luxury touches to keep any builder and his family happy on the weekend.
Obviously, any doublecab was originally designed as a working tool – not an everyday person carrier. That said, manufacturers have realized there is a big market in 2015 for turning a builder-mobile into something of an everyday machine too.
Prices for a D-Max start at around £14,000, so our Utah test car is almost double that price. It just shows how many extra touches you can squeeze into vehicle to improve refinement when you try!