Isuzu is looking to push harder into the fleet sector with the launch of a new fleet dealer programme, while also confirming what the Japanese firm claimed is a new record fleet deal.

The Environment Agency has ordered 197 D-Max pickups.

The fleet centres have been selected to cater for fleet drivers and managers and so far, 50 dealers have been appointed as fleet centres. To qualify, each dealer had to sign a 14-point fleet charter agreement.

Items within the charter include capped labour and parts rates, the option of a courtesy vehicle and full access to technical support at all times.

“We are moving into new territory with our fleet business and naturally we’re keen to ensure that our new partners are given excellent service and aftercare from the outset. We have an advantage in that our dealers only sell pick-ups, which mean they are highly knowledgeable of the sector and pick-up drivers,” said Alan Able, Isuzu UK fleet operations manager.

The EA’s record-breaking order consists of a mix of single cab, extended cab and double cab utility-spec models and will be delivered over the next three months.

The models will be finished in silver and fitted with drop-in liner bodies from Strongs and racking from Bott, while every vehicle will be fitted with all-terrain tyres, a Chapter 8 livery and EA branding.

“We work hard to protect the environment and improve it for people and wildlife – and this principle is applied in everything we do, including reducing our own energy use, waste and emissions,” said Dale Eynon, Environment Agency’s head of fleet operations.” With this in mind, we’re continuing our fleet carbon reduction programme by purchasing vehicles with the lowest emissions in their class, suitable for our challenging environmental protection work.”

Last week, Isuzu announced it would launch a range topping Blade edition of its D-max pick-up at the end of this month priced from £25,999.
The Blade follows on from last year’s special edition model. Isuzu said it had to build twice as many as it had originally planned to keep up with customer demand.

The Blade features a new grey front grille and black finish to the door mirror caps, door handles and tailgate handles as well as 18-inch alloy wheels, while the interior boasts leather seats and black interior highlights. A 6.1-inch touchscreen sat-nav and integrated rear camera is also fitted as standard.

Isuzu’s move to introduce a new top-of-the-range D-max comes following announcements from Mercedes and Renault that they will be entering the pick-up segment for the first time.