Isuzu to Produce ZXS Concept Vehicle as the Axiom Sportwagon
20 April 2000
Isuzu Extends SUV Range With Versatile New Sportwagon - Designed as a Driver's Machine With the Heart of an SUV NEW YORK, April 20 American Isuzu Motors Inc. (AIMI) today announced plans to market the radically new, SUV segment stretching, Isuzu Axiom Sportwagon. The new hybrid SUV evolves from the ZXS concept vehicle first seen at the Tokyo International Auto Show. Production is slated to begin in the spring of 2001 at Isuzu's facility in Lafayette, Indiana. Anticipated production will be approximately 24,000 units per year, with the model selling only in the U.S. market. "The Axiom Sportwagon was designed as a crossover vehicle," said Scott Hyde, AIMI Executive Manager, Product Planning, SUV, "combining two uniquely American vehicle types: the SUV and the station wagon." The new Axiom Sportwagon is to mirror the ZXS concept vehicle in appearance and technical abilities and follows in the concept's intent to be an elegant extension and refinement of the SUV category. And as one would expect of Isuzu, the SUV specialist, the Axiom Sportwagon is more SUV than car, thus fully capable to operate proficiently in severe weather and in challenging terrain. Yet contrasted with typical SUV ride and handling, the Axiom Sportwagon's sophisticated suspension is tuned to accentuate spirited on-road handling and performance while yielding a supremely smooth and comfortable ride. These performance goals are accomplished with a moderate reduction in ride height, a sturdy chassis-frame supporting an independent double-wishbone, torsion bar front suspension and a 5-link live axle with coil springs suspension. This advanced suspension is augmented with "Intelligent Suspension Control(TM)" (ISC). ISC incorporates a dedicated CPU that monitors inputs for terrain and continuously adjusts shock valving to provide superior ride and handling on the road and off. Axiom is the first Isuzu product to combine the ride and handling benefits of ISC's computer-guided, real-time, shock-valving adjustment with the traction and handling benefits of Isuzu's much heralded TORQUE-ON-DEMAND(R) 4WD system. This system, co-patented with Borg-Warner Automotive, Inc., is designed to provide the optimal traction by selecting the most suitable torque distribution between the wheels automatically. The resultant synergy of fully automatic response to terrain gives the Axiom Sportwagon impressive handling and tractive performance. Powering the Axiom Sportwagon is an Isuzu world-class, high performance engine. The 3.5-liter, dual-overhead cam 24-valve V6 engine is rated at 215 horsepower @ 5400 rpm and 230 @ 3000 rpm. This engine features an aluminum alloy cylinder block and heads, electronic sequential multi-point fuel injection, direct ignition system, variable intake, drive-by-wire electronic throttle, and super-fast 32-bit PCM, making it one of the more advanced engines available in an SUV. Of course Axiom's powertrain, like all Isuzu SUVs is backed by a 10-year or 120,000 mile Powertrain Limited Warranty, America's Longest Powertrain Warranty. Axiom Sportwagon's crisply sculpted styling signals the model's departure from conventional SUV styling and performance. Axiom features a sleek profile with an active sweeping crown to the roofline. Axiom's sophisticated European design cues move one's expectations higher -- expectations that Axiom satisfies wonderfully while never forgetting that its heritage is all SUV -- a fact not lost on the observer of Axiom's sculpted fender flares framing its large 17-inch aggressively styled aluminum alloy wheels sporting all-weather tires. The interior design of the Axiom Sportwagon features ergonomically designed controls with upscale amenities demanding drivers expect in a performance vehicle yet with the room and luxury usually restricted to luxury coupes. The custom designed seats are available in optional fine leather, and the rear split-seats feature a fold-down armrest. In addition, Axiom introduces Isuzu's first Multi-Information Display. The optional Multi-Information Display allows occupants to control the premium sound system, automatic climate control and trip computer as well as keeping time with an on-board clock calibrated to the US atomic clock; and to monitor vehicle heading via a digital compass that supplements the alpha heading with numeric heading in degrees. The Axiom Sportwagon also features optional factory installation of Homelink, a system that allows one to control one's garage and home entry with automatic ease from the safety and security of the Axiom's interior. The Axiom Sportwagon is the first Isuzu vehicle of the new century, a century that dawns with challenges and promises for which the Isuzu Axiom is designed to meet and fulfill. Not only is it equipped with the latest technology and manufactured from leading edge means to provide efficient and versatile personal transportation it has arisen from the fundamental force destined to shape the 21st Century -- the Web. It is the first mass-produced vehicle to bear a name generated from that vast interconnected pool of human energy and creativity. So it is entirely appropriate that this newest Isuzu vehicle should be the first to have its own web site. Please visit Isuzuaxiom.com for the latest developments regarding the coming launch of the newest Isuzu model: the Axiom Sportwagon. American Isuzu Motors Inc. is the U.S. distributor of Isuzu sport utility vehicles, commercial vehicles and diesel engines. For more information call (800) 662-2464 or point your browser to http://WWW.isuzu.com on the worldwide web. Specifications -- Engine V6 3.51 DOHC 24-valve gasoline -- Transmission 4-speed automatic gearbox -- Drive system Electronically controlled torque splitting 4WD TOD -- Suspension Front: Independent double-wishbone torsion bar springs Rear: 5-link coil spring suspension Intelligent Suspension Control Tires -- Brakes 4-wheel disc -- Optional extras Driver and passenger seat SRS airbags, ABS -- Capacity 5 persons * TOD and TORQUE-ON-DEMAND are registered trademarks of Borg-Warner Automotive, Inc.