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Isuzu and Piazza timeline and history lesson

Posted: Fri Jan 07, 2011 10:28 pm
by eyecon
Here is a link that people might find interesting. It's from a Piazza fanatic in the States. Apart from giving a timeline on models, specs, features etc, it delves more into the real reason why Isuzu didn't sell that many Piazzas. It explains how GM (global) was responsible for their demise, which perpetuated the misconception that that they were crap. Im sure all or most of you foundation life long members here would already be across all this and GMs seemingly delibrate sabotage of the Isuzu brand, but I thought I'd put it up so everyone can be learned:) He seems right on the money with his explanation. Bloody GM seem to have a track record of making profitable companies bankrupt. Just look at the state of their own company.

Posted: Sun Jan 09, 2011 12:05 am
by vinnie55
It's a bit depressing isn't it.
This also seems another reason why there are hardley any decent new cars these days. GM murdered them. possible, even more glad I have a piazza.
And I was very intregued to find out the bit about the imprezza. That was veeeery interesting.

Posted: Sun Jan 09, 2011 6:36 am
by eyecon
I guess that makes Subaru close cousins, or like a brother from another mother. Impulse-Piazza-Imprezza. I can definitely see something in this connection now.

Posted: Sun Jan 09, 2011 11:39 am
by vinnie55
I've always liked suburu more than other jap manufacturers like toyota and nissan.So I immidiately like this long lost cousin connection

Posted: Sun Jan 09, 2011 2:19 pm
by eyecon
I wonder if the Subaru SVX (which was also another Giugiaro design) had any ex Isuzu designer's input. It's kinda got that uniqueness the Piazza/Impulse has. It's also too coincidental the SVX came along around the time (1992) those designers had jumped ship. I'll see if I can get a picture of the SVX up.

Edit. Found some:


Posted: Sun Jan 09, 2011 6:11 pm
by IZU069
GM only inhibited Isuzu, but now Isuzu are free. New passenger vehicles should be hitting roads "soon".

Though there is a Honda that is an Isuzu, I'm not sure of Subaru - though it does ring a bell.

The above is somewhat like the 4200R - though maybe crossed with the rear of a SAAB (aka Florian-Aska-etc).

Posted: Sun Jan 09, 2011 10:33 pm
by vinnie55
It kinda looks like a piazza that someone uglied up. too many curves. But that's pretty similar to a lot of the cars of that period.


unfortunately these days it's all hot hatches so it's not too likely that we'll get a coupe.
we could get lucky tho.
...but if we do expect FWD....or maybe 4x4

Posted: Mon Jan 10, 2011 9:50 am
by IZU069
Bellett GT-R retro is "one definite" (at least until Toyota bought in) plus another retro (117? Piazza? Some even say Bellel!). (Sources were tight lipped.)

I doubt a Bellett would be FWD - it would have to be at least RWD. It is more than a looks issue!

And Isuzu don't always move with the new norms - eg, the Gemini stuck to upper wishbones instead of the common pissweak MacPherson struts.

Posted: Mon Jan 10, 2011 10:51 am
by vinnie55
Gemini did go FWD tho...

ah wells, time will tell in any case.
we could get lucky and they could make something awesome

Posted: Mon Jan 10, 2011 2:27 pm
by eyecon
Yeah, resurect the Impulse/Piazza

Posted: Mon Jan 10, 2011 3:50 pm
by IZU069
vinnie55 wrote:Gemini did go FWD tho...
Gemini went AWD!

But my point was more to do with the Bellett legacy - IRS & RWD.
They might go AWD Bellett, but I doubt FWD only because it would be severely lacking. Besides, too many of us would kill ourselves or the car - as we do with ABS and stability controls.

The Bellett has special significance for Isuzu. Pundits reckon the GT-R because it was quite a car, and it would have been interesting to see it develop without GM - ie, the ZZR. ZZT and other twincam Geminis did not last long.
But the 4-door Bellett was also special in its way - a 1500cc with IRS in 1964 that did the ton (usually, with little if any work). And reliable as.

Each old model had their beauties though - the Bellel for it lux appointments (G200 OHV with twin Nikki carbies; aircon, big cruise luxury); the Florian for its better than Bellett road-holding and much larger interior (larger than Commodores; equal to HT etc Holdens); the 117 for its style, hand-built and first Jap EFI (driven "only" by privilidged people, black 117s by ambassadors).

The Gemini T-series RWD, RB-series FWD, and later FWD & AWD IMO real sleek versions certainly made their mark.

And there is the political favorite of mine - the mighty up your farken arse GM Piazza. Mind you, it has just a few innovations since copied by others (LOL!).

So in my mind the Piazza isn't retro - it's too new being a 1980 vehicle, but Geez, I think I still class the Gemini as a "new" car!
And then I realise the Piazza is 30 years old....

But as you said Vinnie, time will tell.
I was discussing the above situation about 10 years ago (I think) - in anticipation of no-GM and no puppet President.
And since then lot's has happened - including the unforgivable 8% sale to Toyota. How could they!?

Posted: Mon Jan 10, 2011 6:18 pm
by eyecon
Funny you should say that about revitalizing the retro Piazza/Impulse and the Gemini for that matter. I personally think that time is due.

As a former Industrial Designer with some automotive design experience working at GMH in Melbourne I decided to get my creative juices flowing once again and produce some concept sketches, which I happen to have just finished. My intention was to give the beloved Impulse/Piazza a modern up-to-date freshen up. I asked myself I had a chance to do up the Piazza in this day and age, what can I come up with or what would I like to do? Of course it means I had to use the existing shape, and to be NOT cost prohibitive. Think touch of modern retro look or a freshen up and you get the idea. It's all about cleaning up and smoothing out the classic design lines whilst giving it modern feel. I'll post these up soon on another thread if any one's interested and there are no objections.

Meanwhile I've been toying with the idea of going the next step and coming up with a completely new and futuristic Impulse/Piazza concept. I want to design it as though Giugiaro was designing it again. That will ruffle a few feathers.

Posted: Mon Jan 10, 2011 9:39 pm
by vinnie55
I'd very much like to see these

Posted: Tue Jan 11, 2011 2:20 pm
by IZU069
Finally - a car with 3D heads-up display....
Selectable depth/range of course (for those that hate screen dirt & reflections).

Imagine that - the Piazza will have the display that TVs should have - none of this primitive #D crap, but real holographics.
About time too - the holographic photocopier was invented about 30 years ago. What's become of it?

I suspect holographic cameras will be banned before they hit the shelves. If people are worried about google maps invading their privacy.... ha!

Maybe the Piazza could use my DI audio system. 179dB "at the ear". That's instant damage if not deafness in real terms, but being DI (Direct Injection - bypasses the analog ear drum and proximal synapses) there is nil damage until the engine blows or emergency vehicle kills you. (LOL! It does have auto-muting for such occasions.)

For those that prefer traditional vibration, even though the Piazza would have a 42V system, I'd recommend the newer HVD audio systems. Their High Voltage Distribution overcomes the need for heavy copper. Despite a 4kW audio requiring 115A (@42V, as opposed to 400A @ 12V), the HVD is mere Amps for 10kW output. No more boot batteries.

Then, for the Piazza's motor or rather, power-plant....

Posted: Tue Jan 11, 2011 6:48 pm
by madmike
eyecon wrote:I wonder if the Subaru SVX (which was also another Giugiaro design) had any ex Isuzu designer's input. It's kinda got that uniqueness the Piazza/Impulse has. It's also too coincidental the SVX came along around the time (1992) those designers had jumped ship. I'll see if I can get a picture of the SVX up.

Edit. Found some:

As well as my turbo piazza..
and my 1990 RS legacy rally car

My girlfriend owns a 1998 WRX STI
And a 1992 Subaru SVX.....

The SVX is one of the best cars i have ever driven..
Wedgnut can vouch for how the SVX drives as he took it for a gallop last time we were in Auckland