Isuzu MU-X To Tackle Dakar In 2015 Photo:
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Trevor Collett | Oct, 31 2014 | 0 Comments

After a year on the sidelines, Isuzu is preparing for a return to the Dakar Rally in 2015 with a purpose-built version of its MU-X SUV.

Prepared by Sydney-based Isuzu Motorsports, the MU-X will compete in the ‘International T2’ class for slightly-modified production-based vehicles.

Starting life as the MU-X LS-M 4WD, the racer's tuned version of the standard 3.0 litre turbocharged diesel engine is boosted from 130 to 180kW while torque rises from 380 to 600Nm.

Following successful runs in both the Finke Desert Race and the Australasian Safari, the team is confident the MU-X is ready for the gruelling 8500km Dakar event.

The 2015 Dakar will take in Argentina, Chile and Bolivia over 15 competitive stages, and Isuzu points out that only half the field managed to finish this year’s event.

Isuzu’s last Dakar effort was in 2013 with a pair of Isuzu D-Max pickups, with the Bruce Garland / Harry Suzuki entry forced to retire on Day 12 with engine troubles caused by polluted fuel.

The second D-Max finished 38th outright with Adrian Di Lallo behind the wheel, partnered by Steve Riley. In 2015, Isuzu will return with a single-car entry piloted by Di Lallo and Suzuki.

“I'm very excited about driving the new MU-X, it feels really strong and stable - a credit to the boys who've prepared it,” Di Lallo said.

“The car's got what it takes to finish. Obviously it'll be really challenging, but we have the right equipment and a very good chance at placing well in the production class and we'll be doing our absolute best.”

The 35th Dakar Rally runs from January 4-17 2015; the seventh successive year that the event will be held in South America.

MORE: 2014 Isuzu MU-X: Price, Features And Models For Australia
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Isuzu | MU-X | Rally

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