The Isuzu VehiCROSS is one sweet little ride. It comes equipped from the factory with a computer controlled 4 wheel drive system that is light years ahead of its time. The large, 3.5L V6 produces 215 bhp (160 kW; 218 PS) at 5400 rpm and 230 lb·ft (312 N·m) at 3000 rpm of torque. Those numbers aren't incredibly high, but for what this thing is meant to do, they fit the bill perfectly.
The design elements on the truck are way ahead of its time as well. To put it into perspective, it appeared in the 2000 film Mission to Mars as a convertible fitted with futuristic engine sound effects, and also briefly in Babylon AD in 2008, starring Vin Diesel. Not many cars from the late 90's can say that they were featured in a couple of high dollar films ten years after they cease production. Especially cars that were mass produced in multiple countries.
|"Mission from Mars"|
Now, I use the term "mass produced" pretty loosely in this context, but in reality, the VehiCROSS was never overly popular or common. According to Wikipedia, "Sales were intentionally limited, with only 5958 vehicles being produced between 1997 and 2001; 1805 were produced for the domestic Japanese market and the remaining 4,153 sold in the United States."
At days end, if you are looking for a unique, completely capable little 4x4, keep your eyes open for an Isuzu. Never thought I'd hear myself say that, but there you have it. Let us know if the VehiCROSS is something you would drive off-road, let alone outright purchase. You can also subscribe and "Like" on Facebook to keep up with future Wheels and Deals announcements and specials!