5-Star ANCAP Safety For The MU-X Family

All-New Isuzu MU-X awarded the maximum 5-star ANCAP safety rating across the complete range. Eight airbags including centre airbag, as part of Isuzu’s Intelligent Driver Assistance System (IDAS); a suite of safety and driver assistance technology that is standard across all variants.

Standardising the latest in advanced safety and assist systems with a new stronger body and chassis design, the All-New Isuzu MU-X has been awarded the maximum 5-star ANCAP safety rating across all variants, tested against the latest ANCAP testing and rating criteria.

Australia’s leading independent vehicle safety authority, ANCAP SAFETY published the 5-star safety rating for the All-New Isuzu MU-X on 24th September 2021, praising it for “taking advantage of the safety features already demonstrated in the D-MAX, and its pleasing to see this strong performance carried over into the Large SUV segment.” 

5-Star ANCAP Safety For The MU-X Family test crash

“Safety is a must for those in the market for a seven-seat family vehicle, and the MU-X provides a safe choice for active families,” said ANCAP Chief Executive Officer, Carla Hoorweg.

In the official ANCAP statement announcing the maximum 5-star safety rating result, ANCAP commended the All-New MU-X for its standard inclusion of a full suite of airbags, driver monitoring system and intelligent seat belt reminders for all seating positions across all three rows.

ANCAP’s 5-star rating announcement comes shortly after the All-New MU-X went on sale at Isuzu UTE Dealerships on 2nd August 2021, reaffirming Isuzu UTE Australia’s commitment to safety with every new Isuzu UTE vehicle now available with the maximum 5-star safety rating; from D-MAX SX single-cab chassis ute to the MU-X LS-T SUV, and everything else in between.


Engineered to offer comprehensive impact protection safety for up to seven occupants, the body of the All-New MU-X is stronger and safer than the previous-generation MU-X; constructed with twice the amount of high- and ultra-high tensile steel, with large energy-absorbing deformation zones and a new ring-structured manufacturing technique that integrates the Body Pillars with closed cross-sections for increased occupant cell protection. Under the sleek new bodywork, the backbone of the All-New MU-X comprises a ladder-frame chassis constructed from high-tensile steel for increased strength and rigidity. With safety and strength at the core of the design, the new stronger body and chassis offers all occupants comprehensive impact protection. 

With a focus on occupant safety, eight airbags are fitted as standard across the entire MU-X range. Comprising of dual front, dual side, dual full-length curtain—which extends from the front passengers all the way to the third row—a front knee and a centre (far-side) airbag. Embedded within the inner side of the driver’s seat is a centre airbag—which is relatively uncommon in the large-SUV segment. The centre airbag is designed as a countermeasure during side-impacts to protect both front occupants from colliding with each other and from external intrusion into the cabin during a severe side impact. These supplementary restraint systems (SRS) have been designed to offer maximum impact protection for all occupants within. 

5-Star ANCAP Safety For The MU-X Family airbag diagram

“ANCAP’s new far-side impact testing has been introduced to assist in reducing occupant-to-vehicle and occupant-to-occupant interaction and injury in cases where the crash impact occurs on the opposite side to the occupant,” said Ms Hoorweg.

Far-side impact performance equates to 10.5% of the Adult Occupant Protection component of the ANCAP score, with the All-New Isuzu MU-X scoring a solid 3.5 out of 4 points in this area.

With the new stronger body and chassis architecture and eight airbags within the cabin—including the centre airbag—the All-New MU-X recorded a score of 33.25 out of 38 points or 87 per cent for Adult Occupant Protection, which is among one of the highest scores awarded by ANCAP.

As a firm favourite amongst families with young children, the All-New MU-X range is fitted with three seatback-mounted tether points to accommodate three Child Restraint Seats (CRS) across the middle row, with compatibility for two ISOFIX CRS seats. All seats—including the third row—feature a seatbelt monitoring system, which relays if a passenger is not buckled up. The All-New MU-X recorded a score of 41.99 out of 49 points or 85 per cent for Child Occupant Protection. 

Expanding their testing and protocol regime to cover a broader range of likely scenarios, in late-2020 ANCAP revised their assessment criteria to better focus on real-world incidents, active safety assist technologies and pedestrian and cyclist safety; as part of the updated Vulnerable Road User Protection score.  

Cyclist and pedestrian safety is often a shortfall of large SUVs, but with the high and flat bonnet design, the MU-X provided good protection during the assessment, with the MU-X scoring 37.63 out of 54 points or 69 per cent for Vulnerable Road User Protection.

Encompassing a comprehensive suite of driver assistance technologies, Isuzu’s Intelligent Driver Assistance System (IDAS) utilises rear-mounted radar sensors and an advanced forward-facing Hitachi 3D stereo binocular camera that precisely detects and measures distance, size, velocity and depth of vehicles, pedestrians, cyclists and other potential obstacles around the MU-X. Proving to be more accurate and effective than a conventional monocular camera and radar system, Isuzu’s IDAS enables advanced active safety systems such as Autonomous Emergency Braking (AEB) with Turn Assist, Forward Collision Warning (FCW), Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC), Traffic Sign Recognition (TSR), Blind Spot Monitoring (BSM), Rear Cross Traffic Alert (RCTA), Lane Keep Assist (LKA), Lane Departure Warning (LDW), Emergency Lane Keeping (ELK) and many more potentially life-saving features. Engineered for Australian conditions, IDAS has seen extensive localised testing—enabling Isuzu engineers to finely calibrate functions such as TSR, LKA, LDW and ELK for Australian roads.

With a focus on preventing a road incident in the first instance through advanced technology, the MU-X is one of the few SUVs on market equipped with AEB with Turn Assist—with the system designed to autonomously brake at intersections to avoid driving into the path of an oncoming vehicle—a valuable assistance system that in part contributed to the Isuzu MU-X recording a score of 13.49 out of 16 points or 84 per cent for Safety Assist. 

5 Star Safety For The MU-X Family airbag deployed

IDAS is complimented by a suite of standardised safety and driver assistance systems across all MU-X models, including a Reversing Camera with Dynamic Guidelines, an Intelligent Speed Limiter that can automatically limit the vehicle speed to the posted speed limit and an Electric Park Brake that can automatically engage when at a stop—preventing creeping in traffic and alleviating the risk of unintentionally rolling into the vehicle in front. 

While not specifically tested by ANCAP, all MU-X variants feature LED taillights and bi-LED headlights that automatically illuminate the road ahead when dark outside, with Auto High Beam to prevent dazzling other motorists. Both are brighter and provide greater visibility while on the road. Rear Park Assist Sensors are standard across all models, with the LS-U and LS-T benefiting from additional Front Park Assist Sensors for holistic vehicle coverage. 

With surveys indicating that close to half of all Isuzu owners tow with their vehicle, the complete MU-X range comes equipped with a 3,500kg braked towing capacity and Trailer Sway Control (TSC). Although not a feature that is tested by ANCAP, this active safety feature intervenes if trailer sway is detected to bring the trailer back under control, and is a testament to Isuzu’s commitment to manufacturing safe vehicles for Australian roads. 

Achieving the maximum 5-star ANCAP safety rating against the strictest protocols and standards to date has always been the goal for the MU-X—with safety instilled in the architecture and standardised across all models—to meet the expectations of families, motorists, and Australia’s stringent safety standards.

“Safety has always been of paramount priority to us and we are proud the All-New MU-X joins the new-generation Isuzu D-MAX with the maximum safety rating of 5 stars from ANCAP. This means the entire Isuzu UTE family has top-marks in safety; with 5-star ANCAP safety on every vehicle,” said Isuzu UTE Australia Managing Director, Hiroyasu Sato.

With the All-New MU-X sporting the same comprehensive suite of active and passive safety equipment as its sibling, the new-generation D-MAX, expectations were high for the MU-X.

5 Star Safety For The MU-X Family offset crash

“Motorist’s expectations have grown in recent years, and we are honoured to introduce the All-New MU-X range to Australia with the full suite of safety equipment to meet that expectation, ensuring safety is not an option on an Isuzu.”

“With the entire MU-X range equipped with the highest levels of standardised active and passive safety out of all ute-based SUVs, we are confident that families and travellers will continue to rely on their Isuzu’s to get them out there and back home again safely,” said Mr Sato.

Available from Isuzu UTE Dealers now, each All-New Isuzu MU-X is equipped with the full suite of standardised safety and driver assistance technologies that has earned its place as one of the safest SUVs in its class, with a maximum 5-star ANCAP safety rating. 

For more information, visit http://ancap.link/s/41a054

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By Marty Ledwich

Marty Ledwich is a writer and photographer who is on the road full-time with his wife, Kylie, towing their off-road Roadstar caravan with a Toyota Land Cruiser 200 series. Marty was a volunteer in the Victoria Sate Emergency Service for 30 years and has travelled extensively around Australia.

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