Frolicking in Palawan with the MU-X

2014_nov28_motor1The lush greenery and scenic mountain ranges provide the perfect backdrop for the Isuzu MU-X.

It was a homecoming of sorts for Isuzu Philippines Corporation. It was in 2009 when Isuzu, together with select members of the motoring media came to the beautiful island of Palawan to launch an upgraded version of IPC top selling variant, the Sportivo AUV.

This time around, the country’s diesel authority  sought to end the year on a high note by way of a return ride and drive event to Palawan,  known for its underground river, fresh seafoods, well-paved roads and scenic locations. “Isuzu is not a stranger to the numerous wonderful destinations that the Philippines offer,” said IPC President Nobuo Izumina. “With our All-New Isuzu mu-X, we are confident that touring these many attractions become even more pleasurable. This premium SUV not only benefits from core Isuzu values of durability, reliability and fuel efficiency, but also raises luxury and convenience to a whole new level.”

With five brand new units of the MU-X, media participants took off from Puerto Princesa and meandered their way to the Sheridan Organic Farm in Sabang for a healthy and hearty lunch of fresh vegetables and seafoods before passing over towns and coastal roads that afforded expansive views of the West Philippine Sea. After the lunch feast, the Isuzu convoy snaked their way through the traversing winding roads that cut across rainforests with views of awesome foliage and rock formations. At the end of the route lay Sheridan Hotel, which boasts a beachfront lifestyle rivaling that found on the Philippines’ best seaside destinations. The resort is only a few minutes away from the famous Puerto Princesa Underground River National Park in the Saint Paul mountain ranges, giving the road trip contingent the opportunity to tour what is recognized as one of the world’s new seven wonders of nature.

Apart from experiencing the natural beauty of the place, the participants were also able to appreciate the premium and practical features of the All-New Isuzu mu-X’s spacious interior. Highlights of the interior appointment are the leather seats, leather wrapped steering wheel and door trims, and a seven-inch touch screen display for the six-speaker multimedia system that has aux-in, USB, iPod and Bluetooth connectivity, as well as built-in navigation; a 10-inch roof-mounted DVD monitor with remote control; a six-way power-adjustable driver’s seat and a  passive keyless entry with push-button start/stop ignition.

Second day of our Palawan exploration saw us taking the MU-X through its paces by driving from the Sheridan Hotel to Honda Bay port and the various attractions of Puerto Princesa City, which included a trip to the famous Crocodile Farm. The 2.5 liter 4JK1-TC, four-cylinder diesel engine is fitted with Common Rail Direct Injection and an intercooled Variable Geometry System (VGS) turbocharger with an output of 136 Ps at 3,400 rpm and a high 320 Nm of torque from 1,800 to 2,800 rpm. The engine provided plenty of power, translating to less gear changes, effortless hill climbing and easier driving over some rougher terrain.

IPC offers the All-New Isuzu mu-X in three exciting variants, the top tier MU-X LS-A, with either a four-wheel-drive or a two-wheel-drive system paired with a 5-speed automatic transmission, followed by the MU-X LS-M, which is fitted with a two-wheel-drive system and a 5-speed manual transmission; and the entry level MU -X LS which is equipped with a two-wheel-drive system and a 5-speed manual transmission.

Isuzu’s flagship variant is a combination of luxury, convenience, performance and practicality—all of which demonstrated during the Palawan road trip experience. It is the perfect road trip vehicle, just ask Team Kramer and they will readily attest to this. We in the media second the motion.

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