Isuzu adds two models to its I-series pickup truck lineup for the 2007 model year. The i-370 4x2 Extended Cab and the i-370 4x2 Crew Cab double the fleet as they join the i-290 4x2 Extended Cab and the i-370 4x4 Crew Cab models. The changes mark the introduction of a new, 242-hp, 3.7-liter inline 5-cylinder engine into the extended cab architecture and make the larger Crew Cab cabin available with a 2-wheel-drive (2WD) powertrain.
Isuzu and GM have had a long partnership in the development and production of vehicles and diesel engines. As a result, Isuzu's pickup truck is the Japanese automaker's version of the Chevrolet Colorado/GMC Canyon. The Isuzu I-series pickups were launched as 2006 models, with a rear-wheel-drive extended cab version powered by a 4-cylinder engine and a 4-wheel-drive crew cab with an inline 5-cylinder engine. Crew cab pickup trucks have 4 doors and full-width rear bench seats. Isuzu says it added the 2WD crew cab model for customers who don't need off-road capability, while others sought a more powerful engine in the extended cab architecture.
The 3.7-liter 5-cylinder engine replaces a less powerful 3.5-liter version. The 290 truck also gets a new and more powerful engine-a 2.9-liter 4-cylinder unit that pumps out 185 hp. Standard equipment in the 370-series trucks includes power windows, power locks, power mirrors, and remote keyless entry. A Luxury Package adds an AM/FM audio system with an in-dash, 6-disc CD changer, a sliding rear window, fog lights, electronic traction control, and a limited-slip differential. In the Crew Cab, the Luxury Package includes leather seats-heated for the driver and front-seat passenger-with 8-way power adjustment for the driver's seat and 6-way power for the passenger's seat.
All Isuzu vehicles come with a 7-year/75,000-mile powertrain warranty and 24-hour roadside assistance program on top of Isuzu's 3-year/50,000-mile basic warranty and 6-year/100,000-mile corrosion warranty.
The Isuzu I-Series competes in the Midsize Pickup segment, which consists of 11 models. Buyers in this segment look for reliability, quality, and performance, according to the J.D. Power and Associates 2006 Avoider StudySM and the Escaped Shopper Study.SM
The top sellers in the segment during calendar year 2006, according to the J.D. Power and Associates Sales Report,SM were the Toyota Tacoma (178,351 units sold), Chevrolet Colorado (93,876), and Ford Ranger (92,420). The Isuzu I-Series sold 3,497 units in 2006, an increase of 293.4 percent compared to the previous year. Other models offered in the Midsize Pickup segment include the Nissan Frontier, Dodge Dakota,Honda Ridgeline, Ford Explorer Sport Trac, and GMC Canyon.