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Isuzu P'up
Isuzu P'up 2-door pickup (Mexico)
Manufacturer Isuzu
Also called Holden Rodeo (KB)
Production 1980–1988
Assembly Japan
Thailand: Rayong
Predecessor Chevrolet LUV
Isuzu Wasp
Successor Isuzu Rodeo
Body style(s) 2-door cab chassis
2-door pickup truck
4-door pickup truck
Layout Front-engine, rear-wheel drive layout, however also manufactured with Four wheel drive
Related Isuzu Florian

The Isuzu P'up (short for pickup)[1] is a pickup truck manufactured by Isuzu in Japan from 1980 to 1988, known by the model code "KB", and marketed worldwide. The car shared many parts, including the front clip, with the passenger version Isuzu Florian.

In Australasia, the P'up was known as the first generation Holden Rodeo (KB), while the P'up name was used in Japan and the United States where it marketed from 1981-1987. Another rebadged variant of the KB/P'up was marketed in North America from 1972-1982 as the Chevrolet LUV, an acronym for Light Utility Vehicle.

The P'up was the first Isuzu pickup offered in three cab styles: single cab, double cab and "SpaceCab" ("SportsCab" in some markets).

The Isuzu Faster is the Japanese market name for a series of pick-up trucks that were built by Isuzu between 1972 and 2002. Available over three generations, production of the series ended in late 2002, with the start of production of the Isuzu D-Max, which has replaced the Faster worldwide, excluding North America.



Australasian (Australia and New Zealand) specification versions were distributed by Holden as the Holden Rodeo (KB) from 1981 over the lifetime of the P'up. Original KBs were fitted with circular headlamps and a horizontal four-bar grille, but a 1982 facelift brought rectangular lamps with a 12-port grille insert as well as restyled side mirrors.

First generation (1972–1980)

First generation
[[File:Chevrolet LUV 02.JPG|frameless|upright=1.25|alt=]]
Chevrolet LUV, United States
Also called Chevrolet LUV
Isuzu KB
Isuzu LUV
Production 1972–1980
Assembly Japan
Body style(s) 2-door pickup truck
4-door pickup truck
Related Isuzu Florian

Isuzu of Japan introduced the KB20 / 25 series Faster pickup in 1972. Derived from the Isuzu Florian, the Faster shared many components, including doors and the front-end assemblage. It served as a replacement for the Isuzu Wasp, a pickup version of the Bellett which preceded the Florian. In most export markets, Isuzu rebranded the Faster was known as the "Isuzu KB".[2]

The Isuzu Faster used a traditional truck chassis with a ladder frame and a leaf spring/live axle rear suspension. In front, an independent configuration used A-arm suspension. The 102.4 in (2.6 m) wheelbase was similar to its competitors, as was the six-foot (1.8 m) bed.

Isuzu Faster Double Cab.jpg
Double Cab using Florian rear doors

In 1978 a four wheel drive version became available. The four wheel drive versions received the "Faster Rodeo" label in Japan. There was also a long wheelbase and a double cab (on the longer chassis) version of the first generation. Sales ended in 1980 when the second generation was introduced.


General Motors-Holden's imported the Faster into Australia from November 1972 under the name "Chevrolet LUV", renaming it "Isuzu LUV" in 1977 before it was replaced in December 1980 by the second generation model (now badged "Holden Rodeo").[3][4]

North America

Responsibility of sales in North America was delegated to General Motors (GM). Thus, the Isuzu was retailed under the Chevrolet brand as the "Chevrolet LUV"—LUV being an acronym for light utility vehicle. The only engine was a 1.8-liter SOHC inline-four which produced 75 horsepower (56 kW).

Sales in the United States began in March 1972 as a response to the Datsun and Toyota pickup trucks, as well as Ford's Mazda-built Courier.[5] To circumvent the 25 percent tariff on light trucks (known as the chicken tax), LUVs (as with Ford Couriers) were imported in "cab chassis" configuration, which included the entire light truck, less the cargo box or truck bed and were only subject to a 4 percent tariff.[6] Subsequently, a truck bed would be attached to the chassis and the vehicle could be sold as a light truck.

The LUV's exterior was updated slightly for the 1974 model year, but the first major update came in the 1976 model year, when a three-speed automatic transmission option and front disc brakes were added. Power was up to 80 horsepower (60 kW) for 1977, and sales continued to rise. An exterior refresh and the addition of a 7.5 ft (2.3 m) bed option, with 117.9 in (3 m) wheelbase, brought sales up in 1978 to 71,145. The addition of four-wheel drive in 1979 brought the LUV to the attention of Motor Trend magazine, and earned it their second Truck of the Year award. Sales peaked at 100,192.

Second generation (KB; 1980–1988)

Second generation
[[File:Isuzu Pup.jpg|frameless|upright=1.25|alt=]]
Isuzu P'up 2-door pickup, Mexico
Also called Chevrolet LUV
Holden Rodeo
Isuzu KB
Isuzu P'up
Production 1980–1988
Assembly Japan
Body style(s) 2-door cab chassis
2-door pickup truck
2-door pickup truck (Space Cab)
4-door pickup truck (Crew Cab)

The second generation, also known by the model code KB, was more commonly marketed worldwide under the Isuzu label (either as the Isuzu KB or just plain "Pick Up"). It continued to use the "Rodeo" suffix for the four-wheel drives. The second generation model was the first Isuzu pickup offered in three cab styles: single cab, double cab and "Space Cab" ("Sports Cab" in some markets).


Holden in Australasia distributed the second generation Isuzu Faster between January 1981 and August 1988 as the first generation or KB series "Holden Rodeo", for which production started in December 1980.[3][7] Early KBs were fitted with circular headlamps and a horizontal four-bar grille, but a 1983 model year facelift in December 1982 brought rectangular lamps with a 12-port grille insert as well as restyled side mirrors.[7][8]

At launch, Holden made the Rodeo available in utility (pickup) and cab chassis body variants in both rear- and four-wheel drive layouts. All models featured a floor- or column-mounted four-speed synchromesh manual transmission coupled with the 1.6-liter gasoline or 2.0-liter diesel engines.[9] The 1983 model year update increased these displacements to 1.8 and 2.2 liters, respectively. At the same time a new upmarket "LS" model was issued (coded KB28), fitted with a 2.0-liter gasoline engine and five-speed manual.[10] For the 1984 year model, beginning in February 1984, the 2.0-liter became the base gasoline engine.[11]

The 1985 model from July the same year[7] signalled another facelift, the release of the two-door Space Cab body style, the debut of a new 2.3-liter gasoline engine, and the deletion of the four-speed manual and column-shift selector (making the floor-mounted five-speed manual standard).[12] From March 1986 (1986 model year), the 2.3-liter became standard gasoline engine and in April the subsequent year, the 1987 models obtained a final facelift with an open rectangular grille design and optional power steering.[7][13][14]

North America

The United States continued to receive the Faster under the "Chevrolet LUV" name for the second generation, introduced in 1980 for the 1981 model year. The gasoline engine remained the same, but the LUV was now available with an Isuzu C223 diesel engine making 58 horsepower (43 kW) at 4,300-rpm and 93 pound-feet (126 N·m) at 2,200-rpm. This new engine gave the rear-wheel drive diesel LUV a fuel economy rating of 33 mpg-US (7.1 L/100 km) city / 44 mpg-US (5.3 L/100 km) highway.

After the 1982 model year, Chevrolet stopped selling the LUV in the United States in favor of their own S-10 compact pickup, but Isuzu picked up sales in the US that same year under the name "Isuzu P'up" (short for "pickup"). The US market received either a 80 horsepower (60 kW) 1.8-liter gasoline inline-four (G180Z) or a 2.3-liter diesel version with 80 horsepower (60 kW) (C223). Four-wheel drive was only available in short wheelbase form.[15]

South America

As with North America, the Isuzu Faster was issued under the name "Chevrolet LUV" in South America. Manufactured in Chile from Japanese complete knock down (CKD) sets, these models entered production in 1980, continuing on until the release of the TF series in 1988. At the start, the versions assembled were the K-26 and K-28.

Third generation (TF; 1988–2002)

Third generation
[[File:Isuzu TF pickup Euro specification.jpg|frameless|upright=1.25|alt=]]
Isuzu TF 4-door pickup, Italy
Production 1988–2002
Assembly China: Chongqing (Qingling)
Japan: Fujisawa, Kanagawa
Philippines: Biñan[16]
Portugal: Vendas Novas (ITUK)
Thailand: Rayong
Tunisia: Kairouan (IMM)
United States: Lafayette, Indiana
Body style(s) 2-door pickup truck
2-door pickup truck (Space Cab)
4-door pickup truck (Crew Cab)

2.3 L 4ZD1 96 hp (70 kW) I4
2.2 L 115 hp (85 kW) I4
2.6 L 120 hp (92 kW) I4
3.1 L 120 hp (90 kW) OHV V6
3.2 L 187 hp (140 kW) DOHC V6
2.8 L 100 hp (74 kW) I4 Turbodiesel

3.0 L 130 hp (96 kW) I4 Turbodiesel
Transmission(s) 4-speed automatic
5-speed manual
Related Isuzu TT Fortigo
Isuzu Wizard (first generation)
Isuzu Faster
Isuzu KB

For the third generation (TF), introduced in 1988, the domestic Japanese lineup was divided into two, with the "Faster" label used on rear-wheel drive versions with four-wheel drives now sold as the Isuzu Rodeo. Rodeo became the name used in most markets for this car, but the profusion of labels for different markets continued. Versions sold in the Americas were called Isuzu Pickup and Chevrolet LUV. In the United Kingdom, the pickup was called Isuzu TF and Vauxhall Brava, with the former also retailing in mainland Europe along with the Opel Campo. This Opel branding was also utilized in the Middle East, parts of North Africa and some Asian countries.

Holden Rodeo was the only name used in Australasia, with the Isuzu KB name used in South Africa and some other markets. The names Isuzu Faster-Z, Isuzu TFR, Isuzu Dragon Eyes, Isuzu Dragon Power, and Honda Tourmaster were used in Thailand. Names used in other markets include: Chevrolet T-Series (Egypt), Isuzu Ippon (Israel), Isuzu Fuego (Philippines), and as the Jinbei SY10 series, Foton Aoling T-Series in China, and Isuzu Invader in the north-eastern parts of Malaysia (Sabah).

Japanese sales ended in 1994 without replacement, although export markets continued to receive the vehicle until replaced by the D-Max from 2002.

The TF series received a facelift in 1997. Styling was changed, with a more rounded look at the front, and a new-look dash similar to that used in the 1995 to 1997 model Isuzu Wizard.


Holden introduced the TF series into Australia in 1988, branded as the Holden Rodeo, following on from the name of the previous Isuzu based light truck sold by the brand in Australia. The Holden Rodeo was initially available with a 2.6-liter 88 kilowatts (118 hp) inline-four. A 2.8-liter 74 kilowatts (99 hp) turbodiesel was introduced soon after. Body styles offered were a two-door single cab, a two-door SpaceCab, with space for two small jump-seats (rarely if ever fitted in Australia) behind the front passengers, and a four-door Crewcab, with space for the driver and four passengers. Several trim levels were available, which included DX (base model), LX (mid-range) and LT (top of range, only available as a Crewcab).

The facelifted 1997 (1998 model year) Holden Rodeo came with a new trim level, LT Sport, available as a four-wheel Crewcab only. Airbags for the driver and front passenger also became an option. By 1998 the 2.6-liter engine was discontinued and a new engine was offered, a 3.2-liter 140-kilowatt (190 hp) V6. This engine was available in both rear- and four-wheel-drive. The rear-wheel drive version had the same chassis, and thus ride-height as the four-wheel-drive, but without the transfer case and front axle. The 3.2-liter V6 was the most powerful engine in a pickup truck in Australia until it was replaced in 2003 by the new look Rodeo based on the Isuzu D-Max. Accordingly, this engine was the most popular engine in the Rodeo, and the Rodeo sold very well overall, nearing the sales numbers of the Toyota Hilux, traditionally the best-selling commercial vehicle in Australia.

The Holden Rodeo was updated once again in 2001 for the 2002 model year, with a new diesel engine, a 3.0-liter 96-kilowatt (129 hp) direct injection intercooled turbodiesel. The update was also accompanied by minor styling changes, such as clear indicator lenses, and a different grille.

North America

In North America, the TF series appeared in 1987 as simply the "Isuzu Pickup". Produced at Lafayette, Indiana, Isuzu continued on with the TF until 1996 when it was finally replaced with the Hombre (a badged-engineered Chevrolet S-10). The only engines available were the 2.3-liter 4ZD1, and the 2.6-liter 4ZE1 on four-wheel drive models. This truck holds the distinction of becoming the last carburated passenger vehicle sold in the United States (1993 model year).

South America

As with the previous KB series generation, South American markets again received the TF models under the "Chevrolet LUV" name. Chilean assembly commenced in 1988, reaching 40 percent domestic parts content, with a successful export program beginning in 1993 to Bolivia, Peru, Argentina, Mexico, Uruguay, Paraguay, Colombia, and Venezuela. In total, more than 220,000 units were produced. From 1999 and to little success, Thai Rung Union Car supplied the Chevrolet plant in Arica, Chile with the unique body panels from their "Isuzu Grand Adventure" model to make the "Chevrolet LUV Wagon" and the "Chevrolet Grand LUV". The Grand Adventure was a wagon version of the TF series pickup.

By the late 1980s, supplementary assembly began in Bogotá, Colombia by Colmotores, and in Quito, Ecuador by Omnibus BB Transportes (now General Motors Ecuador) with a 1.6-liter inline-four cylinder engine, making 80 horsepower (60 kW).

October 2005 marked the cessation of Chilean manufacture, replaced by a new generation of LUV based on the Faster's replacement, the Isuzu D-Max.


  1. Lamm (1981), p. 73.
  2. Ruiz (1986), p. 131.
  3. 3.0 3.1 Bebbington (2009), p. 279. "KB Rodeo: December 1980 to August 1988"; "GM-H had been importing light and heavy Isuzu trucks from Japan since the early 1970s. First of these was the Isuzu KB utility, sold as the Chevrolet LUV (Light utility Vehicle). The reputation and recognition of this little utility grew over time until in 1977, the Chevrolet name was deleted and the Isuzu nameplate was used instead. Late in 1980, KB received a major facelift [redesign]. With new sheetmetal, the opportunity was taken to re-badge the car yet again – this time as Holden Rodeo."
  4. "Holden Rodeo (Isuzu Utility)". GoAuto. John Mellor. Retrieved on 8 May 2011.
  5. "Chevrolet Colorado History". Edmunds. Retrieved on May 6, 2011.
  6. "Ending the "Chicken War": The Case for Abolishing the 25 Percent Truck Tariff"., by Daniel Ikenson.
  7. 7.0 7.1 7.2 7.3 Bebbington (2009), p. 280.
    KB Rodeo Released
    Initial release Jan-81
    1983 upgrade Dec-82
    1984 upgrade Feb-84
    1985 upgrade Jul-85
    1986 upgrade Mar-86
    1987 upgrade Apr-87
  8. Bebbington (2009), p. 279–280. "These early series Rodeos could be identified by: the simple horizontal-slat grille design, round headlamps and central Holden lion logo."; "In late 1982, Rodeo received a facelift with a bold new twelve-segment grille and rectangular headlights."
  9. Bebbington (2009), p. 279. "Initially, Rodeo was sold in utility (pick-up) and cab chassis body styles, with a choice of two or four-wheel drive. All versions were offered with a 1600cc petrol or 2000cc diesel powerplant. The transmission was a 4-speed all-synchro manual gearbox with floor or column shift."
  10. Bebbington (2009), p. 279. "Tagged the 1983 year model, it featured increased basic engine capacities – 1800cc petrol and 2200cc diesel. The upmarket LS model (coded KB28) has a 2000cc petrol engine, coupled to a 5-speed manual transmission."
  11. Bebbington (2009), p. 279. "The next update was the 1984 model released in February of that year, with further model proliferation. The 2000cc petrol engine became the base powerplant and the 2200cc diesel remained the option."
  12. Bebbington (2009), p. 279. "With yet another facelift, the 1985 model range was broadened to include the Space Cab – a 2-door utility with a slightly extended cabin, providing extra storage space behind the seats. Also for 1985, a new 2.3-litre petrol engine was added to the range. [...] In 1985, the 4-speed manual gearbox and column-shift selector were deleted. All Rodeos now had a 5-speed floor-shift manual transmission as standard."
  13. Bebbington (2009), p. 279. "In 1986, the range was altered again, with the 2.3-litre petrol engine now fitted as standard equipment across the board. The following year, the KB series Rodeo received its final facelift, identified by the distinctive open rectangular grille design."
  14. Bebbington (2009), p. 280. "Power steering available from 1987".
  15. Lamm (1981), p. 108.
  16. "Isuzu. Isuzu In The Philippines". Retrieved on 2010-07-25.


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