Liveried this year with a gorilla motif, a media convoy spearheaded by three Isuzu D-MAX ploughed through all the obstacles of the eight-day event.
The Isuzu D-MAX media units are driven in most cases, by members of the media themselves; many of whom have never driven off sealed asphalt surfaces in their lives.
“The Isuzu D-MAX has proven to be the ideal vehicle for the job, not only because of its dependable nature or its confidence-inspiring stability, but also because the large cargo bed is able to swallow just about everything the team require to survive in the jungle for days on end. Be it LPG gas tanks, rations of water, cooler boxes full of food, the D-MAX can be depended on to deliver with quiet confidence,” said Isuzu Malaysia executive director Hajime Machimura.
According to Borneo Post writer Patricia Peng Hului who covered the event for the first time this year, being an off-roading greenhorn was intimidating but once behind the wheels of the Isuzu D-MAX, her confidence immediately grew.
“I never expected to be driving the D-MAX, particularly in the jungle. It was so empowering to drive over the obstacles and mud. While I was driving, those on the outside were telling me that the wheels were off the ground and hanging in mid-air but I didn’t feel it at all. It just felt so stable in my hands,” gushed Patricia.
This was echoed by Ruslan Lusi of Harian Metro who confessed to having experienced off-roading before but never encountered such capabilities displayed by the Isuzu D-MAX.
“I am amazed that the D-MAX is just a standard vehicle with minor modifications made to its suspension system only. It is so easy to handle and the traction is really very impressive. Even in the deep mud, the car is able to continue to crawl out. It was simply fantastic,” said Ruslan.
With its low centre of gravity and excellent torque delivery, the Isuzu D-MAX remains sure-footed and predictable without even a hint of drama despite the numerous muddy ridges and narrow pathways.
This impressed seasoned motoring journalist and editor of CAR Malaysia Arvind Kumar.
“I am simply amazed at the level of capability these D-MAX displayed. This event has opened my eyes to the incredible tractability of these vehicles in such difficult terrain. I will definitely tell my grandchildren one day about my experience,” said Arvind.
The Borneo Safari has been Asia’s premier off-road event with a history that stretches 25 years. Isuzu Malaysia has been the Diamond Sponsors of the event for the last four years although the association stretches nearly a decade when the first Isuzu D-MAX was used to ferry members of the media back in 2006.