Isuzu Australia reveals 2016 N Series range


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Updates across the range include new models and new transmission options

 

Isuzu Australia has announced it will be bringing a suite of updates to the local light-duty N Series range.

In a move that sees Australia as one of the first to receive the latest from the Japanese company, Isuzu Australia says the 2016 updates will include new model variants, new technology, and the arrival of the third-generation automated manual transmission with torque converter (TC-AMT).

Six new models will appear in the MY16 Isuzu N Series range; most notably the updates will see the launch of the NNR 65-150 MWB and the NNR 65-150 AMT MWB.

The NNR 65-150 models are rated at 6,500kg GVM and are powered by the 4-cylinder 4JJ1 engine.

Also new to the scene is the 2016 NNR 55/45-150, which comes with a GVM rating choice of either 5,500kg or 4,500kg and features larger disc brakes than its lesser-rated models. It will also be available with the TC-AMT.

The TC-AMT is available to all models with the 3-litre (150hp) 4JJ1 engine, Isuzu Australia Limited (IAL) chief engineer of product strategy Simon Humphries says, and will include a P-position shift lever.

"With the new TC-AMT, customers will benefit from the shift quality and launch feeling of a full auto with the added fuel economy benefits of a well-driven manual," Humphries says.

"The new transmission has been developed after benchmark testing in Australia, with shift timing and logic designed to suit Australian driving conditions and styles, including roundabouts."

The truck maker says exiting roundabouts will be swifter thanks to "a kick-down feature that comes into play when the accelerator is pressed beyond a detent".

When time comes to be stationary, Isuzu says that is when the P-position shift lever comes into play.

The lever "engages a new, substantial park pawl and gear at the rear of the transmission," Isuzu says, and once selected, the gear has the "capacity able to hold a fully laden truck when parked on a reasonable slope."

In terms of safety advances, Isuzu Electronic Stability Control (IESC) will be introduced to the 4x2 NQR models and becoming standard across the N Series is anti-lock braking, Electronic Brake Force Distribution, Anti-Slip Regulator and Hill Assist.

 

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Hoping to build upon the 2016 F Series and 2015 N Series announcements, Humphries says the range will help the company hold its 27-year market share lead.

"We’ve been number one for a long time and Isuzu Motors Japan want to do what they can to assist us in our efforts to stay in the top spot," Humphries says.

"They continue to collaborate with us to ensure we have the best possible products to offer the local market, and that our trucks perform at the highest possible level in Australian conditions.

"This ongoing product development and close relationship with Japan provides our customers with enormous benefits in terms of having more choice, greater access to the latest technology and more driveability across the entire range."

Humphries says the 2016 updates reflect a growing trend towards low displacement engines, typified by the 3-litre Isuzu 4JJ1 engine being featured in N Series models up to 6.5 tonnes GVM.

"Passenger cars feature almost exclusively two-pedal transmissions today and they have been progressively moving toward high performing, low displacement engines in recent years, a trend we see occurring in the truck market as well," he says.

"For commercial vehicles, the benefits are improved fuel economy and performance that is more than up to the task."

Isuzu Australia says the cabin has also seen a revamp in the update, with added amenities such as a new overhead console security net now included in the range.

 

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