The results are in, and the Isuzu D-Max has emerged as the most fuel-efficient vehicle that participated in the recently conducted Fuel Economy Run organized by the Department of Energy (DOE), held in cooperation with Petron Corporation.
Recording a fuel consumption rating of 38.46 kilometers per liter (km/l), the D-Max 3.0 LS 4×2 M/T topped by a considerable margin the 70 vehicle models entered into the DOE mileage testing by 21 automotive companies operating in the Philippines. Among diesel-powered vehicles of all types and sizes – hatchback, sedan, MPV, pickup and SUV — the second-best rating recorded was a 29.41 km/l, which was achieved by a subcompact sedan model. For the gasoline-powered entries, a mini hatchback led with a consumption of 29.14 km/l.
“The rating achieved by the Isuzu D-Max in the 12th Department of Energy Fuel Economy Run, which is far better than the already impressive figures recorded by much smaller vehicles, confirms what we have been imparting to the market all along: Isuzu models, and the D-Max in particular, are some of the most reliable, durable and fuel-efficient vehicles available in the Philippines,” said Isuzu Philippines president Hajime Koso.
“The results of the government’s fuel economy testing provide incontrovertible proof of Isuzu’s expertise in diesel engine technology,” he added.
Along with the D-Max, two other Isuzu models were certified as having exceptional fuel mileage. The Isuzu Crosswind 2.5 XT M/T managed to record a 20.76 km/l rating while the Isuzu mu-X 3.0 LS-A 4×2 A/T logged the second-best result among diesel-powered SUVs with a consumption of 23.53 km/l.
Held in the early hours of May 27, the 12th edition of the DOE Fuel Economy Run tested the 70 vehicle entries over a 280-kilometer course that started from the Petron Clark station in Angeles, Pampanga. From there the route traversed the Subic-Clark-Tarlac Expressway (SCTEx) and the Tarlac-Pangasinan-La Union Expressway (TPLEx), before returning to Petron Clark.
At flag-off time, the vehicles were filled with either Petron XCS gasoline or Turbo Diesel Euro 4 fuels, marking the first time that the cleaner and more efficient Euro 4 fuels were used in the testing. Upon arriving back at Petron Clark, each vehicle was filled up again to determine how much fuel it consumed during the round trip.
The D-Max’s benchmark-setting fuel economy rating is a result not just of proper driving techniques but also of vehicle specifications. These start with the D-Max’s large-capacity 3.0-liter engine that was to proven to be under-stressed in highway driving conditions. The engine’s combination of an advanced cylinder head design featuring low-friction roller bearings, large front-mounted intercooler that minimized power-robbing heat, common rail direct injection that optimizes fuel use during combustion, and Variable Geometry System (VGS) turbocharger helped in keeping fuel consumption to a minimum. Enhancing the performance of the Isuzu 4JJ1-TC (Hi) 3.0-liter engine is a five-speed manual transmission. The D-Max’s powerplant combination is identical to the mu-X.
Both the D-Max and mu-X also boast of aerodynamic body designs as the two models have benefitted from extensive wind tunnel testing at the Japan Railway Technical Institute – the same facility where Japan’s bullet train was developed. The resulting low drag coefficients of both models contribute in cutting their fuel consumption.