Honestly, I had this car for 7 years and 105K before my wife totaled it last week and with the exception of an AC compressor a year or two ago, the vehicle was flawless. I towed a 3500lb boat and it was perfect. Even with the 2WD model the limited slip system never got me stuck at a boat ramp or anywhere else. And it always had plenty of power to tow that boat. Fuel efficiency was always a problem whether towing or not though.
Bought it new 8/02. Seven years, 60k miles now. Regular maintenance service (oil changes,air filter). Replaced the s-belt myself @ 45k miles. No other service. New BF Goodrich tires @ 50k miles.On the way to tire dealer, just to see what power this 6cyl had I held the brake, put the pedal to the floor, slowly released the brake and smoked the tires for 200 ft. Avg 18.1 mpg since day one. Haven't reset since I bought it. Too bad Isuzu pulled out of US. I definitely would have bought another by now. Traded in a '97 Rodeo (bought new, had 137000 miles on it in 5 years, zero repairs) for this one.
The adjustable shocks, self dimming mirror, the auto-climate control-the fact that I don't have to reset the outside air option each time I start car, unlike most vehicles, huge cargo area with/without folding down the seats, info screen (compass, clock, mpg info-ahead of of its time) overall look.
4 years and the only repair was a tuning light bulb! Replace the factory Good Years and the ride quality will improve. I got a set of Pirelli Scorpion ATR - 80 miles/hour and you can hear only a little wind noise! Gas mileage is average, but OK for an SUV - I will say better than most SUVs with same engine size. If you are looking for a used SUV, this will beat by far any other used SUV available in value/reliability/price!
Ride, power, being safe and known that I will get where I want without problems.
Discontinued - too bad, the only suggestion is to make them again. How about a hybrid version?