The Isuzu Gigamax is the biggest truck built by the Japanese manufacturer and was designed for heavy duty applications. The Gigamax has a cab over engine configuration which is usually typical for the European trucks and comes with a gross combination mass (GCM) of up to 70 tones.
The truck is sold globally and incorporates Isuzu ’s latest technologies being equipped with strong and torquey Euro V diesel engines which develop between 415 and 510 hp. Isuzu was always appreciated for its proven reliability and the Gigamax makes no exception offering a standard 3 years or 500.000 kilometer warranty.
The truck features a rugged design with a cab over engine configuration. The front grille is split in three sections and shares the same design language with the smaller trucks built by the company. There are also two lateral wind deflectors mounted on each of the cabin’s corners to improve the truck’s stability at high speeds and to limit wind noise. Besides their practicality, the wind deflectors also underline the tough character of the Gigamax and cope great with the rest of the cabin.
The big bumper has a strong build quality and was engineered to endure harsh working conditions. Continuing the utilitarian look, the front headlights are mounted low into the bumper and feature a rudimentary rectangular design. The truck is also offered with front fog lights which are mounted under the main light clusters.
To enhance the lateral visibility and to add a dose of dynamism to the entire truck, Isuzu designed the big door windows with a sloped bottom line which looks fairly good and gives the truck a modern appearance.
For extra safety, the sides are also fitted with integrated turn signals mounted on top of the access steps.
For periodical technical services the Gigamax’s cab can tilt forward, thus offering easy access to the engine compartment.
Climb inside and you’ll find a fairly spacious cabin with plenty of head- and leg-room for both driver and passenger. The Isuzu Gigamax’s cabin is by no means luxurious, but provides a no-nonsense environment with an easy to understand design. There are hard plastics on the dash and doors, but they don’t feel offensive to the touch and look at par with what you’ll usually find in this segment.
The air suspended driver seat is made of soft cloth and is comfortable, offering nice back support and a bunch of useful adjustments which permit you to find a proper driving position. The thick steering wheel is comfortable to grab and also comes with tilt and telescopic adjustments. Though, it looks a bit dated compared to other units in the segment and Isuzu should consider a radical upgrade it if it wants to keep up with the times.
The center stack is almost car-like and is laid out in the traditional and intuitive way, with the CD/AM/FM/XM controls above and climate controls below. A sat-nav touch-screen display shines in the center of the dash to announce us that we sit in a 21 century truck. This high-tech unit gives you a card slot for music and/or mapping, MP3 input, Bluetooth, vision and sound from up to three optional external cameras, and integrated sat-nav hardware and software (you need only a GPS antenna and mapping card).
The instrument cluster isn’t the most modern unit find so far, but it’s fitted with big and clear gauges that are easy to read even at night. Besides the classic round gauges, there is also offered a separate screen which keeps you posted on fuel consumption, speed warnings, engine hours, service intervals and more.
There are a few nice touches that make the truck feel a little more upscale, specifically the remote keyless entry and locking, and the power windows which come with door mounted controls.
The Isuzu Gigamax is pretty well represented in the storage space department. There are plenty of cubby holes, cup holders and other useful spaces spread across the cabin. Moreover, there is also a huge console mounted between the seats and two overhead storages.
Engines and transmissions
The Isuzu Gigamax is offered with a choice of three engine outputs with maximum power ratings of 415hp, 455 hp and 510 hp with 1863Nm, 2255 Nm and 2255 Nm respectively. The 15,681 litres 510 hp turbo-intercooled, common-rail, electronically-managed Isuzu diesel engine is among the largest-capacity Japanese engines available on the market.
Both Isuzu Gigamax’s SiTEC Series II and III diesel engines are Euro V compliant and boast impressive power and torque, improved fuel economy and low emission levels.
The truck is available with either 12 or 16 speed heavy-duty Isuzu Automated Manual Transmission (AMT) or 18 speed Eaton manual gearboxes.
The side slung tanks on GIGAMAX provide a substantial 1000 litres for non-stop operations which provide an estimated range of anything between 1600 and 2000km in line-haul operations at 56t GCM.
Isuzu Gigamax Engines specifications
|SiTEC II||510 @1800||2255@1300|
Ride and handling
The rear axle unit of the Isuzu Gigamax provides matching torque capacity for 70t GCM and incorporates fuel-efficient, hypoid-design drive axles.
A unique feature for the Isuzu Gigamax is the inclusion of 3 differential locks – an inter-axle diff-lock plus an inter-wheel diff-lock for each of the two axles. This offers total drive axle traction for extreme slippery conditions.
The truck is also equipped with a capable engine exhaust brake operating complemented by a hydraulic Voith retarder that acts as a second stage powerful driveline speed control device. The retarder develops a 3200Nm retardation force at maximum engine rpm and is able to hold 56t in check on most severe downhill sections.
The vehicle comes with standard all-round ventilated disc brakes combined with ABS (Anti-lock Brake System), EBD (Electronic Brake-force Distribution) and ASR (Anti-Slip Regulation).
The rear suspension incorporates standard air suspension with four bags per axle and variable height control to facilitate easy trailer coupling. This means that Gigamax is specifically tuned for highway applications only. The suspension offers a pretty comfortable ride which is combined with a sharp and responsive steering helping you to maneuver the truck pretty easy at both low and high speeds.
The Isuzu Gigamax is a fairly strong and reliable workhorse. It has an ergonomic and spacious cabin fitted with a lot of storage spaces and useful technologies designed to make your life on board easier.
The engines are also up to the task and can deal with both city and highway traffic with ease. Moreover, all three diesel units meet the latest Euro V emission requirements, which makes them not only strong, but also efficient and environmentally friendly. We also like the truck’s ride which is extremely comfortable thanks to the standard air suspension.