2022 Isuzu D-Max ReviewPublished Thursday, November 24, 2022
Everyone is flocking to the 2022 Isuzu D-Max LS-U and D-Max LS-M because they are some of the top-selling vehicles from the Japanese automaker. In fact, this brand is the third best-selling ute! You can find it in extra-cab, single-cab, and dual-cab styles in a 4x4 or 4x2 range.
Depending on your variant, the D-Max features a pickup with a tub bed or a cab chassis. This pickup truck is available in two four-cylinder turbo-diesel engines, as well! You will learn all about the Isuzu D-Max LS-M and the Isuzu D-Max LS-U today, along with all trim models!
Here is a short summary of the 2022 Isuzu D-Max, which includes the Max LS-U and the D-Max LS-M:
- Smooth powertrain with plenty of torque
- Lane-keeping assistance featuring a friendlier design
- Spacious cabin with larger front seats
- Price hike since its launch
- Smaller touchscreen that looks cheaply made
- Narrow driver's footrest
Range Guide for the Dual Cab Ute
Which variant in the Isuzu D-Max range is right for you? There's standard equipment on each option:
Isuzu D-Max SX
- 17-inch steel wheels
- Manual air-conditioning
- Cloth upholstery
- 4.2-inch strip computer display
- 7.0-inch infotainment system (touchscreen), which includes wired Android Auto and wireless Apple CarPlay
Isuzu D-Max LS-M
- 17-inch alloy wheels
- Body-coloured mirrors
- LED daytime running lights
- Bi-LED headlights
- Six-speaker audio system
- Fold-down central armrest
- Seat back pockets
- Rear parking sensors
- Rear USB connector
- High-grade cloth upholstery
Isuzu D-Max LS-U
- 18-inch alloy wheels
- LED rear lights
- Side steps
- Carpet flooring
- Vanity mirrors for the passenger and driver
- Soft central armrest lid
- Soft-touch door trim
- Leather-trimmed gear knob
- Power lumbar support for the driver's seat
- Rear parking sensors
- Tub liner for ute models
- Factory-fitted tow-bar receiver
- Keyless start and entry
- 9-inch infotainment system (touchscreen) with wired Android Auto and wireless Apple CarPlay
Isuzu D-Max LS-U+
- Auto-dimming rear-view mirror
- Heated door mirrors
- Eight-way driver's seat (power-adjustable)
- Heated front seats
- Black interior trim level
- Leather-accented seats
Isuzu D-Max X-Terrain
- 18-inch alloy wheels (black finish)
- Unique exterior trim
- Eight-speaker sound system
- Remote engine start
- Vanity mirror lighting
- Black and red interior accents
- Factory-fitted tow bar
- Heated front seats
- Leather-accented seats
- Front parking sensors
It's important to understand the many variants of the D-Max. They include:
- SX 4x2
- SX 4x4
- LS-U 4x2
- LS-U 4x4
- LS-M 4x4
- LS-U+ 4x4
- X-Terrain 4x4
Within those variants, you can have various engine levels and transmissions. These can include:
- Six-speed manual transmission with a 1.9L engine and a C/Chas
- Six-speed automatic transmission with SEQ sports mode, a 1.9L engine, and a C/Chas
- Six-speed manual transmission with a 3.0L engine and a C/Chas
- Six-speed automatic transmission with SEQ sports mode, a 3.0L engine, and a C/Chas
- Six-speed automatic transmission with SEQ sports mode, a 3.0L engine, and a 4D space cab chassis
- Six-speed automatic transmission with SEQ sports mode, a 3.0L engine, and a crew C/Chas
- Six-speed automatic transmission with SEQ sports mode, a 3.0L engine, and a crew cab utility chassis
Isuzu D-Max Interior
Overall, the D-Max's interior is laid out logically, so it looks modern in appearance and features a no-nonsense aspect.
The lower-spec models feature a 7-inch touchscreen with a thick bezel. You still get the wired Android Auto and the wireless Apple CarPlay, which is rare for the segment. Still, there is no factory satellite navigation available.
On the Isuzu D-Max LS-M and above, you see a larger 9-inch touchscreen, which is slightly better than most because the Ranger and Hilux feature 8-inch screens. There are also helpful shortcut buttons at the bottom to get straight to your home screen or find embedded navigation.
You get a colour 4.2-inch informational display system between the instrument cluster's analogue dials, which displays data about fuel economy, active safety systems, and more.
In the Isuzu D-Max interior, you see clear and legible dials, but the information display is quite cluttered. Luckily, there's a digital speedometer, which you don't find on the Triton and other brands.
Those who upgrade to the Isuzu D-Max X-Terrain will find the steering wheel features piano-black inserts instead of the silver plastic options that other trims provide. There's also red stitching, but everything else is unchanged. Still, it's trimmed in good-quality leather, offers easy-to-understand shortcut buttons, and moves backward and forward (as well as down and up).
That entire range benefits from the new steering wheel switch, which turns off the lane support systems when you hold it down for two seconds.
However, the highlight of the interior has to be the front seats. They're comfortable and cushioned but supportive, as well.
You also get plenty of upfront storage, such as:
- Pop-out cupholders on both ends of the dash (which are pretty neat)
- A split-level glove compartment
- A dash-top tray that holds a phone and features a lid
- A tray at the centre stack base, which is large enough for your smartphone
- A centre console bin that's reasonably sized
Every door features a bottle holder that will fit your typical drink bottom. However, when you go to the backseat, you will see map pockets for the seatbacks, which are soft and stretchy. Likewise, there's a small and open cubby right above your air vents, with a USB-A outlet next to that.
The Isuzu D-Max features plenty of toe room, headroom, and rear legroom in the dual-cab ute class, and there's tons of space for tall occupants.
Likewise, the second-row bench seat folds upward at the base, revealing a special storage space under the seat. However, you can also fold it down to access the shared top-tether anchors for your child seats. There are ISOFIX points readily accessible for your two outboard seats, as well. Overall, the Isuzu D-Max LS-M and other trim levels are exceptional!
With the entry-level Isuzu D-Max (SX), you receive plastic black door handles and 17-inch steel wheels. It's available in a 4x2 or 4x4 as a dual-cab ute, dual-cab chassis, extra-cab chassis, or single-cab chassis.
When you step up to the Isuzu D-Max LS-M, you get body-coloured door handles, 17-inch alloy wheels, LED daytime running lights, and bi-LED headlights. However, the D-Max LS-M is only available as a dual-cab 4x4 with a tub bed or cab chassis.
The LS-U offers a factory tow bar receiver, 18-inch alloy wheels, LED rear lights, side steps, and a tub liner for the ute model range. You can also choose from various paint colours.
Finally, you move to the X-Terrain, which is the top of the range. This gets an orange exterior paint colour, which is exclusive to the model. Likewise, there is a unique exterior trim and 18-inch alloy wheels with a black finish.
Exterior Paint Colours
The 2022 Isuzu D-Max range comes in eight colours. However, there's a $500 premium for all of them other than Mineral White. They include:
- Mineral White
- Volcanic Amber Metallic (on the X-Terrain)
- Magnetic Red Mica (for the D-Max LS-M, LS-U, X-Terrain, and LS-U+)
- Marble White Pearl (for the D-Max LS-M, LS-U, X-Terrain, and LS-U+)
- Obsidian Grey Metallic
- Mercury Silver Metallic
- Cobalt Blue Mica
- Basalt Black Mica
Isuzu D-Max Cost of Ownership
The Isuzu D-Max features seven full years of roadside assistance and a 150,000km/six-year warranty, which is better than the traditional five-year warranties offered by other brands. Plus, the seven-year roadside assistance is what you need for your adventure-focused truck, and that includes seven years of the capped-price servicing.
Generally, maintenance on the vehicle is required every 15,000km or 12 months, whichever one comes first. Typically, with service intervals as noted, the first seven years should cost $3,513 for a 3.0-litre model or $3,223 for 1.9-litre styles. However, Isuzu offers a complimentary three-month/3,000km inspection for free!
How It Drives
With its 3.0-litre turbo-diesel, four-cylinder engine, the Isuzu D-Max is tractable and torquey. In fact, it pairs well with its six-speed auto transmission, which keeps it within the torque band so that it shifts smoothly. Plus, there's no turbo lag, and peak torque comes up at 1,600 RPM, sticking around until it hits 2,600 RPM.
There is a gruff soundtrack that sounds similar to a diesel ute when you accelerate, but it mellows out at cruising speeds. Likewise, wind, road, and tyre noise are low, even when you're travelling at normal highway speeds.
Overall, the electrically-assisted steering is car-like and light, but it doesn't feel vague. It's an excellent addition in tight urban cities, and the Isuzu D-Max generally feels more manoeuvrable than its rivals that have hydraulic setups. Likewise, the steering feels very secure as your speed increases.
The ride quality of the Isuzu D-Max is among the best in this segment. The usual jingles from the ladder-frame ute are kept to a minimum, even if you have an empty tub. Those jiggles are also stopped when you have a small load, which makes it easier to focus on driving and safety.
Likewise, the blind spot monitoring works exceptionally well and is a highly welcomed addition. In general, this feature is quite rare in this segment. However, you don't have to worry at all!
You don't get an obtrusive lane-keep assist feature, and the adaptive cruise control performs admirably and as it should. Likewise, you may adjust the sensitivity of certain systems, such as that forward collision warning.
However, what's more impressive about the Isuzu D-Max is that the noise levels, ride quality, and steering don't get significantly worse as the speed goes higher. Therefore, it's a great highway cruiser and can tackle urban settings easily, too. In a sense, the light steering, capable powertrain, and well-behaved ride ensure that this is the best ute to drive!
Safety Features and Rating
The Isuzu D-Max earned a five-star rating after being tested in 2020 by ANCAP. This rating is based on the adult occupant protection score, and it received 83 per cent there. Then, the safety assist score was 81 per cent, while the child occupant protection score sat at 89 per cent. However, there was a 69 per cent score for vulnerable road user protection tests.
Every model, including the D-Max LS-M, comes with these safety features:
- Reversing camera
- Automatic high-beams
- Traffic sign recognition (which links to the speed limiter through speed assist)
- Turn assist
- Rear cross-traffic alert
- Lane-departure warning
- Rear parking sensors
- Forward collision warning
- Driver attention monitoring
- Lane-follow assist
- Blind-spot monitoring
- Autonomous emergency braking
The automatic models also include adaptive cruise control, wrong-pedal acceleration warnings, and lane-keep assist.
Likewise, eight airbags are standard here, including the central one that's designed to stop a passenger's or driver's head and flailing arms from crashing into each other during a side-impact crash.
Rear Cross Traffic Alert
Most people understand the safety features that come with the Isuzu D-Max, but one of them is slightly confusing. Rear cross traffic alert is there to help you reverse out of spaces when you might not see oncoming traffic. This often happens in parking lots. Though it doesn't automatically reverse for you, it ensures that you can see what's happening.
It's standard on most models, including the Isuzu D-Max LS-M.
Many people wonder how old the current generation is and when there might be updates or new versions of the Isuzu D-Max.
Currently, we are at the third-generation Isuzu D-Max, which was revealed in 2019 in Thailand. It's been available for purchase in Australia since the summer of 2020.
However, the 2022 Isuzu D-Max (LS-M and other trim levels) received a special update. The carmaker introduced its new turbo-diesel engine, which is a 1.9-litre four-cylinder. There are also new trim levels and body styles added to the existing grades.
However, two variants were discontinued from the 2022 Isuzu D-Max to make room for the Isuzu D-Max LS-M and the X-Terrain.
Now, the 4x4 models feature a higher GCM (gross combination mass) of 6,000kg, which is 50kg more than the 2021 models featured. Likewise, the full range, including the Isuzu D-Max LS-M, has a steering wheel switch that will turn off your lane-support systems. This comes in handy and allows you to be in control of the ute.
There are many exciting accessories that you can add to the Isuzu D-Max LS and other body styles. These include:
- Electronic brake controller
- Bull bar
- Wireless phone charger
You might be wondering what the kilometre limit and warranty period are for the Isuzu D-Max LS. The carmaker suggests that you service your 2022 Isuzu D-Max every 15,000km or 12 months, whichever might come first. Likewise, the 2022 Isuzu D-Max features a 150,000km/six-year warranty.
As with many of the ute competitors, Isuzu has faced significant delays on the D-Max because of high demand. Many buyers are still waiting to get the 2022 Isuzu D-Max; they haven't arrived from the Thai factory, and they may have to put things off until 2023.
Isuzu announced in 2021 that those who ordered the 2022 Isuzu D-Max before July 31 of that year would have a locked-in price, even if it jumped. That's good news, but it would be much better if the newest models were available immediately.
Are you worried about how much boot space there is within the 2022 Isuzu D-Max? The dual-cab D-Max features a tub measuring 490mm tall, 1,530mm wide, and 1,570mm long. Likewise, there's about 1,122mm between those two rear-wheel arches. That should tell you it can hold just about anything.
Most people focus on the fuel consumption of any vehicle they purchase. The 2022 Isuzu D-Max features a combined fuel economy range of 7.7L and 8L per 100 km in the 3.0-litre D-Max, depending on the variant. However, the 1.9-litre option has a fuel consumption rating of 7L per 100km.
All D-Max variants feature a 76-litre fuel tank.
Overall, the D-max has a fuel consumption rating of 6.9 litres per 100km, but testing indicates that it can go as high as 8.7 litres per 100km.
The dual-cab 2022 Isuzu D-Max features an integrated tray that measures 1,870mm wide and 5,280mm long, but the X-Terrain is actually 1,880mm wide.
Likewise, the full range includes a wheelbase of 3,125mm, and the tallest X-Terrain sits about 1,810mm high.
There's an approach angle of 30.5 degrees, a ramp-over angle of 23.8 degrees, and a departure angle of 24.2 degrees. However, Isuzu claims a wading depth of 800mm.
On the 3.0-litre 2022 Isuzu D-Max, you can tow a braked trailer of 3,500kg with a 350kg down ball load. However, the payload can vary from 1,320kg for the single-cab chassis to 970kg for the X-Terrain. Then, the 1.9-litre model features a braked towing capacity of 2,800kg (manual) or a 3,000kg rating with an automatic. However, the unbraked towing capacity is just 750kg.
Depending on the variant, there are different measurements for the D-Max.
The D-Max is competing with the other 4x4 and 4x2 ute classes in Australia, so it's head-to-head with Nissan Navara, Mitsubishi Triton, Ford Ranger, and Toyota Hilux. Likewise, it takes on the Mazda BT-50 well because they're mechanically identical.
Isuzu sold about 6,478 D-Max 4x2s in 2021 and 18,639 D-Max 4x4 models.
In fact, it's the second best-selling 4x2 ute in the world, only being outsold by the 4x2 version of the Hilux, with 13,214 sales. Likewise, it beat the 4x2 version of the Mazda BT-50 (2,876) and Ford Ranger (4,293 sales).
Overall, it was the third best-selling 4x4 ute and was only outsold by the 4x4 version of the Toyota Hilux (39,587 sales) and the Ford Ranger (45,986 sales).
When you combine the two figures together, you see the D-Max has 25,117 sales and was only outsold by the Ford Ranger with 50,279 sales and the Hilux at 52,801 sold.
The D-Max has one direct competitor; the Mazda BT-50 shares a similar platform and the exact same engine. However, the 2022 Isuzu D-Max also competes with the 4x4 and 4x2 segments with the LDV T60 Max, Ssangyong Musso, GWM Ute, Ford Ranger, Nissan Navara, Toyota Hilux, and the Mitsubishi Triton.
Currently, its pricing is the same tier level as the Ford Ranger and Hilux, though it has a better value than its counterparts.
General Motors and Isuzu developed utes together for the first two generations of the D-Max. You might remember the Holden Colorado and the Holden Rodeo. These utes shared similar underpinnings as the second- and first-generation D-Max models, respectively.
Where Is the Isuzu D-Max Built?
The 2022 Isuzu D-Max (and all its trim levels) are built in Thailand and then shipped directly to Australia.
What's the Towing Capacity for the Isuzu D-Max?
Overall, the 2022 Isuzu D-Max features a braked towing capacity of between 2,800kg to 3,500kg, which depends on the variant. Likewise, there's an unbraked towing capacity of around 700kg to 750kg, depending on the trim level.
What Fuel Type Does the D-Max Use?
The D-Max features a diesel engine, so you cannot use petrol.
How Many Doors Are on the D-Max?
It depends on the variant you choose, but there could be four or two doors.
When Should You Get Service on the D-Max?
The carmaker suggests that owners service the D-Max every 15,000km or 12 months. This depends on how often you drive the vehicle.
Should You Get the D-Max?
You do get the more important aspects that matter for the 2022 Isuzu D-Max, such as a robust 3.0-litre engine, a dual-cab style, and a 4x4 configuration. However, when you bump up and upgrade to the 2022 Isuzu D-Max LS-M, you're not getting much more for the price. In fact, they're similar to the entry-level option, such as the SX.
It's nice that Isuzu provides more dealer-fit options to help bump up the low-spec ute, but some people find that their money is spent better on a higher-grade model, such as the LS-U+ or the X-Terrain. Then, you reap the many benefits of extra features while capitalising on manufacturer offerings and discounts.
Regardless, the Isuzu D-Max LS is impressively competent and is backed up by a strong warranty and a high-output engine. There's no wonder why it has jumped ahead of its previous model and can still beat the competition. In fact, it took the award in 2022 for Drive Car of the Year for the best dual-cab ute.
Clearly, this is a workhorse ute, and it's top of the class. Therefore, it deserves all the newfound popularity it's seen in the market. Even with the price hikes, it's still durable and robust enough to handle anything.
However, there are other V6 models on the road, such as the Ranger. They tend to have oversized touchscreens and other excellent features. Therefore, the D-Max might need to be revamped again before too much longer.
Are you looking for a sturdy ute for work or travel? It's best to seek professional advice from Westside Auto Wholesale. We offer plenty of used cars and trucks in Australia and can find exactly what you require.