Junkyard Find: 1984 Isuzu P'up

Murilee Martin
by Murilee Martin
junkyard find 1984 isuzu p up

All right, we saw one of the rarest examples of Detroito-Japanese badge-engineering of the 1980s in Sunday’s Junkyard Find— a Chrysler/Mitsubishi truck— and today we’re going to look at GM/Isuzu truck that’s a bit less uncommon (but still not something you see every day): a Chevy LUV wearing its original Isuzu badging.

Chevrolet stopped selling the LUV in the early 1980s, but you could still get the second-gen Isuzu Faster in North America for the 1983-88 model years, now badged with an equally cute name: P’up!

I drove a Diesel P’up when I had a job delivering tropical fish in the early 1990s, and the thing— which had about 400,000 miles on the clock— was miserably slow but got absurdly stingy fuel economy. This P’up burned gasoline and didn’t even make it to 150,000 miles.

The P’up was cheap, and it had Joe Isuzu as pitchman.

Join the conversation
2 of 24 comments
  • Lapisblau Lapisblau on Dec 11, 2012

    These were great trucks for a business to operate. My dad's company owned a fleet of these in the 80s. They ran all over town delivering heavy items like furnaces, every day. They had the four cylinder gas engine and four-speed manual. As an accountant, he appreciated how affordable and dependable they were. As a kid I had a scare in one of these. The parking brake lever, which can be seen to the left of the steering column, was too easy to release. It was meant to be done by rotating the handle 90 degrees CW and letting the lever pull in. My sister was sitting in the middle seat and I was on the right. Somehow we bumped the handle, the brake was released, and the truck started rolling back down the driveway. I shouted at her, "Push the brake pedal! The middle one!" and pulled the e-brake back out. Fortunately we stopped the truck quickly.

  • Pup Owner Pup Owner on Dec 04, 2014

    I can speak from experience, My 1984 Isuzu Pup, one owner, gets me to work and back everyday. It's in rather rough shape since I picked her up from the Isuzu dealer in 1984. (rust holes here and there) The 1.9 Liter gas engine does fine in city traffic with it's 4 speed Manual trans. It's the Long Bed version and I have been stopped numerous occasions while driving by someone hoping to purchase it from me, My response: Check with me again in ten years and I'll let you know. In the hot S. Florida climate I do use the A/c quite a bit, which will freeze anyone (38 degrees at the vent). I did an average repair and maintenance calculation over the entire life of the truck approx. $6K. Includes everything, tires, batteries, Oil services, alternators, belts, 3 paint jobs, A/C compressor,Brake jobs, u-joints, you name it. Engine has never had more than valve cover removal and oil pan gasket. Mileage a click under 200K. I used to say it has never left me stuck, although one time in rush hour traffic I stalled it and was using an old battery(I knew it wasn't going to re-start)I quickly hopped out, started pushing it, slid it into 2nd gear, popped the clutch and was on my way before anyone sounded their horn. It will start with an almost DEAD battery, every time.

  • Alan I do believe that traffic infringements penalties based on income will affect those who are financial able to flout safety regulations.When I drive above the posted speed limit I assess my situation using probability. If I'm confronted with a situation where time is of more value to me than speed I will speed if I assess the probability of a fine to be quite low. I can afford the fine, what I can't afford is the loss of points on my drivers licence.In Australia (12 points in QLD and all States have a point system) we have a points system attached to your drivers licence. An open drivers licence is granted 12 points every 3 years. So, if you receive an infringement for exceeding the speed limit it takes 3 years for the points to be removed. I generally get caught once every 2 years.I think a points system would be a fairer system over a system based on income. Its about retaining your licence and safety, not financial gain by the government.As you can see below it wouldn't take long for many US drivers to lose their drivers licence.[h2]Current penalties for individuals caught speeding[/h2]InfringementPenalty amountDemerit pointsLess than 11km/h over the speed limit$287. 1 pointAt least 11km/h but not more than 20km/h over the speed limit$431. 3 pointsMore than 20km/h but not more than 30km/h over the speed limit$646. 4 pointsMore than 30km/h but not more than 40km/h over the speed limit$1,078. 6 pointsMore than 40km/h over the speed limit$1,653. 8 points and 6 month suspension
  • Wjtinfwb Instead of raising fines, why don't the authorities enforce the laws and write tickets, and have judges enforce the penalty or sentence of a crime. I live across the street from an Elementary School on a 4-lane divided state highway. every morning the cop sits in his car and when someone sails through the School Zone well above the 10 mph limit, he merely hits his siren to get their attention but that's it. I've never, in 5 years, seen them get out of the car and actually stop and driver and confront them about speeding. As a result, no one pays attention and when the School Zone light is not lit, traffic flies by at 50-60 mph in the 45 zone. Almost no enforcement occurs until the inevitable crash, last year some zoned out girl rolled her beater Elantra 3 times. On a dry, straight, 4 lane road with a 45 mph limit. I'm no Angel and have a heavy foot myself. I've received my share of speeding tickets, lots of them when younger. Traffic enforcement in most locales has become a joke these days, jacking prices because someone has a higher income in as asinine as our stupid tax policy and non-existent immigration enforcement.
  • Jeff S If AM went away I would listen to FM but since it is insignificant in the cost to the car and in an emergency broadcast it is good to have. I agree with some of the others its another way to collect money with a subscription. AM is most likely to go away in the future but I will use AM as long as its around.
  • BEPLA I think it's cool the way it is.If I had the money, time and space - I'd buy it, clean it up, and just do enough to get it running properly.Then take it to Cars and Coffee and park it next to all the newer Mustangs.
  • Dave M. I suppose Jethro’s farm report comes via AM, but there’s a ton of alternative ways to get that info. Move forward people. Progress is never easy.