Isuzu Motors India , a subsidiary of Isuzu Motors Ltd, Japan, launched the mu-X premium SUV in India. The 4×2 variant is priced Rs 23.99 lakh and the 4×4 is priced Rs 25.99 lakh, ex-showroom, Delhi. The mu-X is a full-size, seven-seater SUV. It is powered by a 3.0-litre diesel engine which produces a maximum output of 130kW (177PS) and torque of 380Nm. Both the 4×2 and 4×4 variants will be available with a sequential shift automatic transmission; there’s no manual gearbox option as of now. It will be built at the company’s new plant at Sri City in Andhra Pradesh.

During the launch in Delhi, Hiroshi Nakagawa, director of the Board and managing executive officer, Isuzu Motors Ltd, said, “India is a key market and a future hub of our global manufacturing plans. We will continue to invest in Indian operations and bring in the best technology and engineering that we have to offer globally.” Hitoshi Kono, deputy MD, Isuzu Motors India, added, “The Indian SUV market has come of age and we are excited to be present here with our latest offering. We are confident the mu-X will set a new benchmark for full-size premium SUVs.”

The mu-X directly competes with established brands such as Toyota Fortuner and Ford Endeavour, both of which are slightly expensive. The Fortuner 4×2 diesel automatic 2.7-litre is priced Rs 29.88 lakh, while the Endeavour 4×2 diesel automatic 2.2-litre is priced Rs 26.63 lakh onwards. Isuzu SUVs are known globally for their butch styling and the mu-X is no exception. Its muscular exterior gives it a dominating presence on the road.

The company says a key aspect of the mu-X is cabin space. The third-row seating, for example, has enough room for three full-size adults. The second-row seat folds fully at the touch of a button for comfortable ingress and egress for the third row. Although the product appears promising, Isuzu, which entered India in 2012 and currently has 28 dealer outlets, still has to work on providing the kind of after-sales support its competitors provide. The company is making efforts towards that. All Isuzu vehicles, for instance, come with a warranty period of 3 years or 1 lakh km—customers also enjoy emergency roadside 24×7 assistance.

Apart from the mu-X, Isuzu also sells the D-Max V-Cross in the personal vehicle segment and variants of the D-Max pick-up trucks for the commercial segment.