The new generation of the Isuzu D-Max offers an update on a popular vehicle; everything that’s great about the pickup it replaces, gets a polish here. There’s also a new 1.9 litre turbocharged diesel engine and a choice of automatic or manual gearboxes, both six speed. It helps that the starting price of £15,749 for the utility single cab will attract attention – but not every buyer in this segment is swayed by a low price tag. The D-Max comes with a choice of single, extended and double cab variants. Essentially, the 2017 model of the Isuzu D-Max delivers a more rounded vehicle than the pickup it replaces and while the list of standard equipment has been improved and the refinement levels have risen, there’s a lot to like about this vehicle but it’s fighting in a competitive segment with pickups offering plusher cabins, more equipment and better handling. Perhaps it’s for this reason that the Isuzu D-Max is aimed squarely at utilitarian users such as farmers rather than those ‘lifestyle’ buyers who like the chunky good looks.
The Volkswagen Crafter is an all-new creation and the firm’s most versatile and largest van with a wide choice of body styles including Tipper, panel van, double and single cabs and a dropside. It’s also a very comfortable place to spend long journeys with an impressive interior and lots of safety equipment for peace of mind. Typically, the Crafter has been outperformed by its rivals, particularly from Ford, but it has built-up a strong following with those owners appreciating the solid build and reliability levels. The new van is solid and its practicality will make it a popular choice for those who spend money on it – if they decide to make the switch from the competitors.