Alfa Romeo Stelvio - Stylish and Classy
The Alfa Romeo Stelvio is a luxury compact SUV which has a sporty and racy stance, yet still oozes style and class both inside and out. The Stelvio is one of the best looking SUVs in its class, a true work of art, and one that will turn heads no matter where it is.
Alfa Romeo began production of the Stelvio in 2016 with sales beginning in 2017. The Stelvio is Alfa's first attempt at an SUV, and they certainly hit the ground running not only in looks but also its performance on the road. Alfa cleverly used much of the design and engineering platform used in the impressive Alfa Romeo Giulia to ensure the Stelvio would be able to perform at the highest levels.
Alfa has set their sights high with the Stelvio battling against some of the biggest hitters on the market, such as the Porsche Macan, BMW X3, Audi Q5 and Jaguar F-Pace. There are four primary trim levels to choose from; Super, Sprint, Lusso Ti and Veloce along with a performance-tuned beast called the Quadrifoglio. Each Stelvio trim level is equipped with a generous selection of features and assists as standard, making the Stelvio an attractive option for any potential SUV buyer.
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Engines, Power and Performance
Alfa has focused much of the engine line-up for the Stelvio around performance to ensure it drives as impressively as it looks. All engines are mated to an 8-speed ZF automatic transmission, a favourite amongst many other popular car makers, such as Jaguar and BMW, allowing for quick manual or automatic gear changes.
There are two main petrol engines to choose from, both of which use a 2-litre four-cylinder turbocharged unit. The other petrol engine is a 2.9-litre V6 BiTurbo, used exclusively with the high-performance Alfa Romeo Stelvio Quadrifoglio.
The first of the two standard petrol engines has 200hp and 330Nm of torque and is capable of hitting 0-62mph in 7.2secs and will continue to a top speed of 134mph. The second petrol option develops 280hp and 400Nm of torque and sees the 0-62mph times drop to just 5.7secs and the top speed rise to 143mph.
The 2.9-litre V6 BiTurbo petrol engine gives the Quadrifoglio 510hp and an impressive 600Nm of torque. All of this power enables the Quadrifoglio to sprint from 0-62mph in a pulsating 3.8secs and will top out at 176mph.
The diesel line-up uses a 2.2-litre four-cylinder engine with two different power outputs. The entry-level diesel engine has 190hp and 450Nm of torque, capable of a 0-62mph speed of 7.6secs and a top speed of 130mph.
Next is the most powerful diesel version, with 210hp and 470Nm of torque, which drops the 0-62mph time to 6.6secs and the top speed increases to 134mph.
All Stelvio models are fitted with Alfa's Q4 AWD system as standard, apart from the entry-level diesel which can be selected with rear-wheel-drive (RWD) or AWD. The Stelvio has a perfect 50/50 weight distribution and a drag coefficient of just 0.32. There is an optional Performance Pack available with all Stelvio models, standard on the Quadrifoglio, adding an improved adaptive suspension setup. All of this adds up to make the Alfa Romeo Stelvio one of the best handling sports SUV on the market.
Interior Quality and Technology
The interior of the Stelvio has recently received a mid-life face-lift, with added technology and luxury materials, to ensure it can continue to compete with the impressive premium rivals in its class. The new interior suite now features plenty of soft-touch plastics and various aluminium and real-wood accent trim pieces. The gear-leaver is now wrapped in leather, rather than cheap plastic, which all adds to achieve a more luxury and premium interior.
Each Stelvio is equipped with a generous selection of equipment and tech as standard. All models are equipped with the Alfa Romeo Connect infotainment system, using an 8.8-inch colour touchscreen. Standard features include; sat-nav with European maps, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, Bluetooth connectivity, Bi-Xenon headlights and a 7-inch colour TFT driver instrument display cluster.
Some of the optional extras available include a sublime Harman Kardon Audio system, perfect for those music lovers, and an electric sunroof.
All models offer a surprisingly relaxing and comfortable ride, considering how sporty the Stelvio is, helping to make it appealing to a broader market. The seats have plenty of adjustment, as does the steering column, and although they are soft and easy to relax in, they still support your body in all the right places.
Space, Practicality and Safety
The Alfa Romeo Stelvio is a large SUV and as such offers plenty of interior and boot space. Climbing into the front, both driver and passenger are welcomed by soft, comfortable seats with plenty of adjustment either manual or electronic, depending on the version or optional packs selected. There is a generous amount of headroom and legroom on offer to accommodate just about any sized person.
Moving to the rear of the Stelvio and space is still good but not class-leading, partly due to the sporty, sloping roofline which does eat into some of the available headroom. Legroom is good, and three adults will fit across the rear bench with relative ease.
There are various useful storage compartments through the interior such as door pockets front and rear, cupholders and a cubby under the front centre armrest. The boot has a capacity of 525-litres and a cavernous 1600-litres with the rear seats folded down. All models come with an electrically operated tailgate with multiple opening positions, which can be selected through a feature on the infotainment system.
The Stelvio was awarded a 5-star rating from Euro NCAP when it was safety tested in 2017 scoring particularly high (97%) in the Adult Occupancy section. The new facelift model features a wider selection of the latest safety assists, many of which would be optional extras on rival models.
All models are equipped with the Park Assist Pack and the Driver Assist Pack as standard. The Park assist pack includes a rearview parking camera, along with front and rear parking sensors. The Driver Assist Pack includes traffic sign recognition, Lane Keep Assist, Active blind spot assist and Active cruise control, along with various other safety assists.
The Alfa Romeo Stelvio is a gorgeous family SUV which offers not only stunning looks, impressive performance and driving experience but also a practical and comfortable interior. It's an excellent alternative to the standard array of family SUVs on the market and a car that will leave your work colleagues and neighbours admiring.