While I (and I expect you as well) rarely see first generation Isuzu Troopers around much, here’s one that was never very thick on the ground to begin with, being only available for one year in the United States. When I saw it, it literally stopped me in my tracks.
While the original Troopers were all 2-doors, this one is from 1989, well after the 4-door became the standard bearer over here but what makes it different is that it rides on a 90″ wheelbase, shorter than any Trooper before it. Why Isuzu decided to go the route that pretty much everyone else in the segment had completely abandoned by that time is beyond me (and they probably wondered so as well since they didn’t offer it here after this year either). The Trooper was sold all over the world and while it clearly appears to be influenced by the Range Rover, it was always quite affordable and considered fairly rugged.
That being said, this is one of the cleaner Troopers by far that I’ve seen in years (decades?) and one I would be excited to drive. Having driven (and more often ridden in) a complete stripper 4-door of this vintage in the early 90’s bought at a massive discount on the last day of the year 1990 by a previous boss of mine and marveling at the relative lack of rapid progress I’m sure the sole powerplant offered here in this SWB 2-door wouldn’t leave me overwhelmed either, being the 2559cc “4ZE1” inline-4; even more (or less?) so if it had the optional automatic transmission. Those aren’t the wheels it was sold with either but it looks rather good on the slightly larger ones it seems to have now.
This one was parked while hauling a scrap refrigerator, and yes, that trailer is a fair bit longer than the Trooper. At least this load is light and the little trucklet is unlikely to be able to build up a huge amount of speed (for everyone’s safety I suppose). I decided in this case not to attempt to take interior pictures as this isn’t really an area where I felt getting so close to someone else’s ride would be a wise decision.
Still, I find this one in particular to be a sharp little rig and something I’d very much like to drive around town now that my daughter has my Wrangler. Isuzu also made a SWB Trooper of the newer generation but that was never sold over here; in Europe and I’d imagine Down Under though they are not at all uncommon, for good reasons. While I couldn’t locate an ad for the 1989 2-door, I did find the one below for the 4-door. At that price (adjusted to $27k today) I’m not surprised they sold as well as they did. I think Isuzu peaked a little too early in the U.S., if they had held on they might well be quite popular today with updated versions of their various 4WD’s.