If there’s one thing I’m certain of, it is the fact that – without a doubt – I always return from an Isuzu mu-X adventure with a treasure trove of fond memories, with a new appreciation for our country, a friend or two richer and as always, the comfort and capabilities of the mu-X never ceases to amaze me, however the admiration never goes ago.
It happened in Clarens with the launch of the mu-X, it happened on my own mu-X adventure in Lesotho, it happened in Mozambique a few months ago and recently, it happened again when I joined a group of motoring journalists, writers and social media influencers on one epic journey – put together by Khulekani on Wheels in partnership with Isuzu Motors South Africa – of about 850 km.
With a convoy of four mu-Xs, and the Kalahari Ferrari (a red Isuzu D-MAX) in front, the trip took us from Cape Town to Langebaan on the West Coast, onto to a quick lunch at Aquila and a whistle stop in Matjiesfontein before we crossed the border into the Northern Cape and stayed close to the fires in the cold-cold Sutherland and then moved through Pniel to end our last night in Stellenbosch, at Le Pommier Wine Estate.
The diverse and scenic landscapes we traversed through gave us ample opportunity to experience the comfort and power of the Isuzu mu-X; it handled like a high-speed boss around on the Karoo’s open, quiet roads and tackled the dirt roads sure-footedly and with ease leaving nothing but dust in the distance.
The Isuzu mu-X, a firm favourite in the SUV segment across the world, launched in South Africa about a year ago and this 7-seater multi utility crossover is powered by a 3.0-litre 4-cylinder turbodiesel engine with peak outputs of 130kW and 380 Nm. It is available in either a 2×4 or a 4×4 and the Terrain Command Dial on the latter – with electronically selected modes of 2 High, 4 High and 4 Low – makes it perfect for off the beaten path adventures, especially with its ground clearance of 230 mm and underbody protection. The Isuzu mu-X has a combined cycle consumption figure of 7.3 L/100 km, and with its lekker comfortable interiors, a touchscreen infotainment system and a total of 7 power ports (3 x USB ports and 4 x 12 V power sockets), this is a vehicle you definitely would want to take on the long road. For more information, head over to Isuzu’s website.
Isuzu mu-X Adventure: where to go, what to do?
Langebaan is a quick drive from Cape Town, off the R27, and known for its calm turquoise waters, windsurfing, kite-surfing, yachting and a lekker moderate climate. There’s a golf course, a number of restaurants, mountain biking trails, a casino and West Coast Fossil Park is not too far if you wanted to step back in time, and !Kwha Ttu San Heritage Centre is in close proximity while West Coast National Park is just next door if you want to go on a relaxing game drive, spot small game and enjoy an (almost) private beach, Kraalbaai.
Stay here: Club Mykonos
Eat here: Pearly’s Restaurant (in town) and Marc’s Beach Bar (at Club Mykonos).
Distance to Cape Town: 130 km.
Sutherland is a small Karoo town in the Northern Cape that is known for its extreme temperatures, starlit skies and of course SALT, the Southern African Large Telescope and the Sutherland Planetarium which is the only privately owned Digital Planetarium in South Africa. There’s also the Louw museum, a few hiking trails and Tankwa National Park is close-ish by. Then there is also Roggecloof, and this place quickly wormed its way into my heart; not all places GET conservation, but every now and again you stumble upon hearts that beat for wildlife, for nature, for the beauty that surrounds us. Roggecloof, just a few kilometres from Sutherland, GETS it, apart from being home to the last active volcano in Southern Africa (erupted about 70 million years ago), fossils, history and wildlife, they’re also actively involved in the Endangered Wildlife Trusts’s cheetah metapopulation project.
Eat here: The Roggecloof team prepared a delicious dinner spread, and breakfast but if you want to eat in town rumour has it that you should go to Ou Meule and Cluster d’hote.
Distance to Cape Town: 345 km.
When you say Stellenbosch everyone always immediately think either students or wine and that is not far off; the town is surrounded by the Cape Winelands’ vineyards and home to dozens of quaint and quirky cafes, galleries, boutiques, markets and of course, you are spoiled for choice and spoiled again when it comes to the number of wine farms/estates in the area where you can wine, taste and dine.
Stay here: La Pommier Wine Estate
Eat here: La Pommier Wine Estate has a great breakfast and lunch menu (the gourmet salad with caramalised pears was definitely a dish to remember), then there is also Oppie Dorp in Stellenbosch for dinner.
Distance to Cape Town: 50 km.
Thank you to Khulekani on Wheels for putting such an amazing Isuzu mu-X adventure together and also thank you to Isuzu Motors South Africa.
Majority of images in this blog post was taken by talented photographer, Malusi Msomi (Durban Spotter).