By on June 15, 2015


As previously rumored, General Motors and Isuzu confirmed today they’ve “reached an agreement on a U.S. commercial vehicle collaboration” that sees low cab forward trucks making their way to our shores with bowties.

Six new models will be available in the U.S. – Chevrolet 3500, 3500HD, 4500, 4500HD, 5500 and 5500 HD – all based on the Isuzu N-Series.

According to a release from GM, two cabs (regular and crew), three engines (GM 6.0L V8 gas, Isuzu 3.0L turbodiesel and 5.2L turbodiesel) and varying chassis lengths from 109 to 212 inches will be available. The two companies will “explore the use of GM commercial vehicle components” for the trucks and GM will continue its supply of 6.0L V8 gasoline engines and six-speed automatic transmissions to Isuzu. Chevrolet-badged V8 gas models will be assembled in Charlotte, Michigan.

GM has sourced trucks from Isuzu in the past but exited the medium-duty segment in 2009. Isuzu previously sold passenger vehicles in the U.S. but abandoned the market in January 2009 after trimming its lineup down to GM-sourced SUVs and midsize pickups.

The new trucks will go on sale at participating dealers next year.

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26 Comments on “Confirmed: Isuzu N-Series Will Be Sold by Chevrolet in U.S....”

  • avatar

    But…they did this before. There were even GMC versions!

    • 0 avatar
      bumpy ii


      This is most likely just to give Chevy dealers something bigger than a 1-ton to sell to fleet buyers.

  • avatar

    An awesome series, and one Bertel might have supplied, would be something like Brands You Thought Were Dead. Showing the global strength of brands now defunct in the USDM would be enlightening.

    Like, I hear VW is actually pretty strong in places that block Japanese products.

  • avatar

    Cab over trucks look ridiculously stupid, and it’s a major PIA to work on them. At least the old Kodiak looked acceptable enough to drive anywhere outside work settings.

    • 0 avatar

      Yeah, but it handles pretty good in town.

    • 0 avatar

      How is it tough to work on a cab over truck? I used to drive a UD 1300 Turbo. All you had to do was pull a lever behind the driver’s side front wheel and the entire cab tipped forward, exposing the engine from above and both sides. Nothing could be easier. Kodiaks looked like they were cobbled together from repurposed 2nd-rate pickup cabs, which they were. Cab over trucks have roomy cabs that run the full width of the truck.

    • 0 avatar

      No one buys a work truck for looks. The COE format is all about maximum cargo/equipment room in a minimum wheelbase. The COE/LCF still exist in the US a medium duty delivery truck and as heavy garbage collection trucks.

      In the US the COEs mostly disappeared after the length laws became much easier in 1982. Freightliner discontinued the last heavy truck (Argosy) in 2006.

    • 0 avatar

      Yes Cabovers are a pain to work on very poor access to anything and a real big pain when you have to do major work compared to a conventional where you can have the front end off after pulling 4 cotter/hair pins, their corresponding hitch pins and one wire connector.

  • avatar

    5.2L turbodiesel!

    Wait, only 175HP???

  • avatar
    Mr Imperial

    If the 6.0 gas engine can fit in there, so can the 6.6 Duramax, with maybe just a little reworking of the plumbing, etc. Same bell house pattern as well.

    I predict that the Duramax will be offered in two cases: if demand for the trucks is high enough, then GM will have enough financial incentive to offer the more costly-to-make Duramax. The other case-if enough talk of “the trucks are underpowered to the competition” or to perk-up weak/nonexistent demand.

    • 0 avatar

      There is no need for an oversized diesel in these, the 4cyl gets the job done and fleet buyers aren’t going to spend extra to spend extra on fuel. The 6.0 exists because there are a lot of fleets that prefer the lower entry and maintenace costs of a gas engine or the even lower overall cost of Gaseous power so they need a spark ignition offering for that market.

  • avatar

    Smart move on GM and Isuzu’s part, GM needs mediums to compete, Isuzu needs volume and the Bowtie badged NPR sold in respectable numbers for years.

  • avatar

    I thought it was strange seeing the U.S. trucks all with long bonnets (hoods). I guess it is a local tradition. In Oz we have none of them short of the giant B-doubles and road trains. Almost all our mid- duty trucks are Isuzu, Fuso or Hino. The Isuzu diesels are legendary. I have a 14 tonne Isuzu bus with a 5.7l turbo diesel. It has half a million kilometers on it and pulls like a train from 1100rpm. It returns 16 l/100km which is not much more than my wife’s Ford pickup.

    Once America gets used to them, I think they’ll do well. I expect to hear lots of comments about safety in a head-on and maybe someone has real statistics. It does not seem to be an issue here.

    • 0 avatar

      We’ve had them, I remember seeing tons of them in the 90s, but today it’s starting to become odd because they’re getting rarer. I just don’t feel they make much sense, the east of accessibility of a regular Tractor trailer makes the cab over pointless for anything bigger than this.

      Outside of trash trucks that is, it actually makes a good bit of sense on those since they have forks of the front.

    • 0 avatar

      I’m conceptually a fan of cabovers for their lack of wasted space, but they really don’t ride very well on standard issue bombed out US freeways, at the speeds most people travel across on them. Probably the reason many road train drivers prefer long nose trucks as well, despite availability of plenty powerful Euro cabovers down there.

    • 0 avatar

      The seating position makes for a long day. I drove a UD for a year, as the new guy at the company. The rest of the trucks were conventional domestics and everyone hated the UD.

  • avatar

    I drove an Isuzu NPR for eight years as part of my job and I loved it! I could maneuver that thing into any crazy tight space you could point to thanks to the crazy tight turning radius. I wouldn’t trade that truck for anything with a hood as far as driving is concerned. I didn’t have to work on it so I cannot comment on ease of maintenance but with the cab lifted the entire engine is exposed. I don’t see how that makes things hard to work on?

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