Back in October 2018 we got our hands on Frankie’s 2017 Isuzu Dmax and modified it from your basic run of the mill, mall crawling ute into a built rig that can comfortably go just about anywhere! In fact, you’ve probably seen it at some point across our social media channels. We’ve been chipping away at this build over the last eighteen months, in between Frankie’s off-road adventures and even a military deployment, however we’re stoked that it’s just about finished, and are excited to see where it goes on it’s next adventure!

Isuzu Dmax Modifications Modified
The Dmax Build – Approximately 3/4 Complete
Image: Supplied by Customer.

Frankie first approached us back in 2017 about modifying his trusty old GQ Patrol. It desperately needed some TLC but the quote was starting to add up, leaving Frankie to do some serious thinking. With a young family to consider, the decision was made to upgrade from the GQ to something that could reliably and safely carry Frankie’s family across the country for years to come. After crossing the NP300, Ranger and Hilux off the list, Frankie settled on the Dmax with it’s widely praised 4jj1.

GQ Nissan Patrol
Frankie’s Old GQ Patrol
Image: Supplied by Customer.

The Build – Isuzu Dmax (2017)

At the time of purchase, the Dmax had been “modified” by Isuzu to have their factory nudge bar, side steps, sports bar, two spotlights and a shiny set of black rims on some BF Goodrich All Terrains. Frankie removed most of this before bringing it to us, and the first thing on our agenda was to get some decent protection on it. By installing the TJM Outback bull bar, brush bars, side steps and matching TJM Rear Step Tow Bar plus the TJM bash plates, and a 9500lb TJM Torq Winch, we immediately had the Dmax looking tougher. Most importantly though, it’s protected against any animal strikes as well as kamikaze trolleys in the Woollies carpark.

Modified Isuzu Dmax
The Dmax fitted with factory accessories.
Image: Supplied by Customer.
Modified Isuzu Dmax
The Dmax fitted with our TJM Outback Bar, Side Steps and Rear Step Tow Bar (Brush Bars were added at a later date) on the way to Fraser Island.
Image: Supplied by Customer.

Next, we ditched the stock suspension and installed a 2″ lift with Bilstein Shocks, King Springs and constant 300kg Tough Dog leaf springs in the rear. We also installed a secondary fuel filter (which has already proved it’s worth!), a Provent 200 catch can and TJM Airtech Snorkel. To assist with towing the camp trailer, we also installed a Redarc Tow Pro.

RSI SmartCanopy – Isuzu Dmax

One thing Frankie has been really keen on is the RSI SmartCanopy. At the time, RSI only offered the TUV Canopy, though they have since extended their range. If you haven’t heard about RSI before, they are a stainless steel canopy made in South Africa, and aside from offering multiple accessories, the main benefit of the RSI Canopy is their strength. With a 350kg static roof capacity, they don’t need to be modified internally to support weight above like many other brands.

RSI Smart Canopy SmartCanopy Isuzu Dmax
The RSI SmartCanopy TUV, featuring our old Automotive Etcellence branding.
Image: AE Co 4×4

Frankie is an avid tourer but sold a lot of his gear in a package deal with the GQ. This meant he was in the market for some new accessories for the Dmax to make these trips that little bit easier and more comfortable. We hooked him up with a Darche Eclipse 270 Awning, a Darche Xtender 2.5 Touring Tent, Yakima Platform Roof Rack with modified mounts to suit the canopy, and a Uniden UH9080 with a matching Uniden AT970BK Antenna.

Isuzu Dmax Modified Darche Awning Eclipse Xtender
The Dmax showing the Darche Xtender 2.5 Touring Tent as well as the Darche 270 Eclipse Awning
Image: Supplied by Customer..

Next on the mod list is a custom AE Co 4×4 Tune and a tyre upgrade to a set of Toyo RTs. We are super stoked with this build, and love seeing photos of the Dmax out and about.

2017 Isuzu Dmax Mod List


Are you thinking about getting your 4WD modified?

Are you looking for safe and reliable mods that will improve your capability off-road whilst retaining comfort and durability?

Come and see the team at AE Co 4×4 and let us build your dream 4WD. We are at the forefront of Adventure Enrichment and have been for the last 6 years, bringing ONLY quality products to the 4WD market – if we wouldn’t fit them to our own vehicles we don’t sell it!
It is our job to ensure you are sold quality products that are perfect for the application you intend them for.

Make sure you check out our Facebook page HERE!

Zippay available at AE Co 4×4!

Need to make some necessary modifications to your 4WD but can’t quite afford it? Don’t wait! Own what you love, with interest free, nothing to pay upfront, flexible repayments. Check out with Zip and own the way you pay.

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