The Rodeo is soon to be back ? well, it is and it isn?t. The nameplate that has been a household word in Australia for nearly three decades is gone, but the car that would have been the next generation Rodeo is about to arrive ? and it?s now called the D-MAX.
In a matter of weeks, the new D-MAX one-tonne light truck range will go on sale in Australia under the banner of Isuzu UTE Australia Pty Ltd (IUA), not to be confused with brand sibling but separate entity, Isuzu Australia Ltd.
IUA?s D-MAX range will include 4x2 and 4x4 variants in ute (pickup) and cab/chassis configurations. The D-MAX name is by no means new, in fact it is the second top-selling one-tonne conventional cab/chassis/ute range in the world, we?ve just known it as the Rodeo in Australia.
Australians have already had a taste of D-MAX, but in the form of a Dakar-style diesel desert rally racer driven by Sydney?s Bruce Garland in the recent Australasian Safari in outback WA from August 23-30. Garland won by the way, and in doing so became the Safari?s first ever diesel-powered podium finisher and competitive stage winner.
Isuzu still owns the Rodeo name, but IUA decided to adopt the worldwide D-MAX nameplate. Around 40 Isuzu UTE dealers have already been appointed nationally with more to follow.
According to IUA, they are all well-established and reputable operators and many are luxury and niche car brand dealers, who will now be able to bolster their offerings with a light commercial range.
We?ll keep you updated.