General Motors and Isuzu Collaborate on Chevrolet Medium-Duty Truck
Version of Low Cab Forward Isuzu N-Series to be Sold Through Chevy Dealers
Continuing a partnership that’s more than 40 years old, General Motors and Isuzu announced collaboration on a medium-duty truck for Chevrolet. The cab forward design, based on the Isuzu N-Series, will be rebadged and sold through Chevy dealers starting in 2016.
This isn’t the first time Chevrolet will receive a low cab forward from Isuzu, as the latter company’s N-Series/Elf truck has formed the basis of a GM derivative since 1984. The Chevrolet and GMC-badged trucks have existed worldwide since then, although they took a brief hiatus in the American market in 2012.
Chevy is quick to point out that the simply named 3500, 3500HD, 4500, 4500HD, 5500, and 5500HD trucks will be compatible with a variety of body types, including stake beds, refrigerated boxes, and service bodies. Additionally, the range (along with its Isuzu N-Series twin) is the only medium-duty service truck available with a gasoline-fired engine.
The GM-sourced 297hp, 372–lb-ft 6.0L V-8 provides motivating force for the 3500 and 4500, while the 3500HD will get an Isuzu-built 3.0L diesel I-4 making 150 hp and 282 lb-ft. The 4500HD, 5500, and 5500HD will get a 215hp, 452–lb-ft 5.2L diesel I-4. Additionally, the lineup is available with two different cab configurations (regular or crew) and several different wheelbases ranging from 109 to 212 inches.
Isuzu and GM’s tie-up resulted in the first Isuzu-built vehicle to be sold in the U.S., the 1972 Chevrolet LUV. It’s also given us the regrettable Isuzu Ascender and badge-engineered Holden Rodeo. While the low cab forward trucks seem to be another rebadge and nothing more, this collaboration will also give Isuzu access to GM’s engineering and powertrain resources, making Isuzu vehicles more competitive and giving GM a strong product in yet another fleet/commercial segment.
Source: Chevrolet, General Motors