Wednesday, 26 September 2018

Fury pick-up shows signs of being a raging success

THE Furies, according to Greek mythology, were a wild bunch and no mistake. They were sometimes referred to scarily

THE Furies, according to Greek mythology, were a wild bunch and no mistake. They were sometimes referred to scarily as “female deities of vengeance’.

Fury itself of course means great anger but it can also demonstrate extreme strength in a natural phenomenon.

Apply it to a car and I think potential buyers would like to see the vehicle live up to its name.

We have been here before: I have often cited carmakers’ insistence in naming models.

Historically, giving a model a name has proved successful. The good old Dodge Charger is my all-time favourite.



Today, sober carmakers have dropped names in favour of numbers: for example, models in numerical series.

But Isuzu, makers of this week’s drive — the Isuzu D-Max 2.5D Fury Manual Double Cab — have emblazoned this pick-up with the name “Fury’.

Not only that, but the livery on the test car was a fierce shade of red.

Naturally enough, carmakers never name a red Tomato Red or Pillar Box Red. For a truck with a name like Fury it would have to be far more spicy.

So Isuzu describes the colour of this pick-up as Magma Red. That’s more like it. You know what magma is: that hot volcanic stuff that lurks just below the earth’s crust.

And indeed, with the right colour in place and a thumping good engine, the Fury’s street cred is assured. This roadgoing model comes via a successful Isuzu rally truck of the same name.

So the scene is set for our test drive. A testosterone-fuelled pick-up truck in blazing red, with a macho black roll bar and wheels the colour of molten lava. I kid you not.

But I have to say I enjoyed every minute of driving it, which might tell you more about me than you care to know.

The odd thing is that when I first tested the excellent D-Max pick-up back in September 2013, what I liked about it was its understated looks and undoubted strength.

The headline at the time alluded to a “Big Max with bad attitude’ but that dude had half the attitude of this latest model, the D-Max Fury.

It goes without saying that you must have the double-cab version of these pick-ups to make them work as a vehicle for leisure purposes. Otherwise you are restricted in room, which seems daft with such a huge vehicle.

But the D-Max Fury had a roll-top back and there is acres of space for carrying just about everything in the pick-up platform.

The ride is pretty bumpy in parts but not on motorways. Here, the cruising speed from the deeply powerful 2.5-litre twin turbo diesel engine is easily maintained.

That said, I think there is still some finessing of instruments to be done in the cab.

The light switch on one steering wheel stalk too easily “accidentally’ goes around to the fog-light position, while the Pioneer sound system is terrific but the volume control fiddly. But in general, the display of dashboard functions is simple and effective and new technology is readily available.

On the comfort side the special Fury seats were fine, though I missed not having heated seats (they are available on the Utah double cab).

Isuzu says the new engine is “one of the cleanest powertrains available in the pick-up segment’ and is more efficient than many lower-powered engines.

Emissions of 194 g/km CO2 and fuel economy of 38.7 mpg (4x4 manual models) — a 10 per cent increase over the outgoing model — contribute to reducing the overall running costs of the D-Max.

In a world of cars that every day becomes a little blander and more predictable, the D-Max Fury is a breath of fresh air. You don’t really have to be a fire-eating monster to enjoy it. As a motorist you just play to its considerable strengths and sit back, hold on tight and enjoy the ride.

Isuzu D-Max facts

Isuzu D-Max 2.5D Fury Manual Double Cab: price £19,999

D-Max available in three body styles: single, extended and double cab

Five specification models for double cab: Isuzu D-Max utility spec; Eiger; Yukon, Utah and Blade

Powered by 2.5-litre twin-turbo common-rail diesel engine

Power and efficiency: 163 PS, 400 Nm and 38.7 mpg (combined cycle)

Six-speed manual or five-speed automatic transmission available

Class-leading load-lugging: 3,500 kg (braked) towing and 1,000 kg payload capacities

Four-star Euro NCAP safety rating

Five-year/125,000-mile warranty

Prices from £14,999 to £26,999 (OTR)



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