No test drive of a modern Isuzu would be complete without talking to DAVE, as Isuzu wants us to call its digital audio visual equipment (geddit? DAVE). The interface is easy to use and effective while the options seems to expand every time we see a new Isuzu. The decision by Isuzu to head down the path of offering this kind of telematics throughout the range has set the benchmark for other truck brands to follow.
The use of a radio and the ability to connect wirelessly to a smart phone for both phone calls and media are now a given. In a recent survey car buyers resoundingly asserted the lack of Bluetooth connectivity is a deal breaker in car buying decisions. The situation in trucks cannot be far behind.
For Isuzu the new frontier on which the technology envelope is being pushed is in telematics and integrated information system both for driver and truck owner. The development of this technology continues apace while the range of possibilities for its use multiply.
“Our research shows telematics is still being used primarily for vehicle tracking, and as market leaders we need to be getting the message out there that this technology has enormous capacity to positively impact road safety in Australia,” said Phil Taylor, Isuzu Australia director and chief operating officer. “It comes down to taking your responsibilities as a manufacturer seriously, and for Isuzu Trucks that means empowering our customers with the technology to keep their people as safe as possible on the road.”
Isuzu is now offering two options. Isuzu Connect can be retrofitted to older models, while the more advanced Connect Plus can be packaged in the new range. The system monitors driver speed, over-revving, heavy braking and adherence to geo-fenced areas. The Plus option also includes engine management data from clutch activation and fuel consumption to how much time the engine is idling. It can also be supplied with a panic button, collision alert and door-open monitor.