The first generation Isuzu Fargo was introduced in December 1980 with a 1.6 and 1.8litre petrol engines, and a 1.8litre diesel engine.
- August 1981: 2.0litre diesel van introduced.
- March 1982: 1.8litre gasoline and 2.0litre diesel engines introduced.
- July 1982: Introduction of luxury-oriented nine-seater LS van, featuring a standard sunroof among other features.
- November 1983: Part-time diesel four-wheel drive model introduced.
- January 1984:
- November 1984: Four-wheel drive van added.
- January 1986: Changes to instrument panel.
- January 1987: Automatic transmission available on rear-wheel drive variants.
- September 1987:
- October 1988: Cab forward pickup (truck) body style added.
- January 1991: 2.4litre 4FG1 diesel engine introduced, replacing 1.8 and 2.0litre units. Design changes made to both the interior and exterior.
- August 1993: 2.4litre 4FG1-T turbodiesel standardised across the range. Three-point rear seatbelts now fitted to models fitted with rear seats and the air conditioning unit is now chlorofluorocarbon-free (CFC).
General Motors' Australian subsidiary, Holden released the Isuzu Fargo van in February 1982 as the WFR series Holden Shuttle. The original release Shuttle was available in short- and long-wheelbase guises, in combination with either low- or high-roofs; all of which available with or without side cargo windows. Two engines were initially offered: a 1.8litre 4ZB1 petrol rated 65kilowatts (87hp), and a 2.0litre 4FC1 diesel outputting 44kilowatts (59hp). In 1986, the 1.8 petrol was withdraw and replaced by the 2.0litre 4ZC1 petrol producing 69kilowatts (93hp). All three engines were coupled with a four-speed manual transmission.
The single, cargo-carrying model was accompanied by the limited edition LS—a highly specified nine-seater people-mover variant in October 1982. Only 250 were built for Australian consumption, however, in August 1983, the LT nine-seater people mover was introduced. The lower specification LT was not equipped with the many of the LS Shuttle’s luxury features, including the dual-zone air conditioning. An AM/FM radio and Compact Cassette player, and digital clock were standard on the LT, with single-zone air conditioning available as an option. Both the LS and LT were powered exclusively by the petrol engine.