Alfa Romeo has always produced vehicles with pretty exterior and interior design, but now those cars are competitive, as they are going head-to-head with the top dogs. When it comes to the sporty sedan segment, Alfa Romeo Giulia is the great example of a car that looks good, and that can rival to the Germans.
The SUVs are another story though, but even in this segment, Alfa Romeo has something to offer – the Stelvio, a car which brings back the customary Italian design combined with driving pleasure. SUVs are gaining popularity day after day, and Alfa Romeo Stelvio needs to be perfect in order to live up to the expectations. Even though the Italian carmaker produced a vehicle of this type, which is, to be honest, slightly uncharacteristic, they claim that its driving quality and brand heritage will remain intact and that every Alfa Romeo enthusiast will be thrilled with the car.
Engine and Weight
Under the hood, the new 2018 Stelvio has a 2.0-liter turbocharged engine that produces 280 horsepower which is mated to a ZF 8-speed transmission and a rather upscale suspension setup. The AWD configuration is standard, but it will send the power to the rear wheels most of the times. Taking into account all of these features, the result is a sporty car with the sharp and responsive transmission, great handling and stable cornering.
The 2018 Alfa Romeo Stelvio has shed some serious weight as mostly aluminum has been used for the powerplant, suspension and body panels, whereas the drive shaft has been made out of carbon fiber. Because of this, the Stelvio goes from 0 to 62 mph in 5.7 seconds – a satisfactory result.
The new model has been tested in the Italian Alps where the conditions are slightly different, and the car had no problem switching from sending all the power to the rear wheels to distributing it to all four wheels. The switch was immediate, and the improvement was felt in an instant as the vehicle became more confident and safer to drive.
Once this happens, the driver will not even notice, but what he/she can notice (and enjoy) are the beautiful mountain passes and just amazing landscape. The suspension offers a compliant ride but is on the firm side a little bit, but in tight turns, the Stelvio managed to stay remarkably flat and hold on to the ground, which is not a characteristic for an SUV.
The way ZF gearbox is modified in Stelvio is slightly harder to understand, and when you let the car shift for you, the logic behind gear changes is somewhat questionable. The manual transmission is a completely different story and you can exploit every rev of the engine, while as a driver, you will be more engaged, thus preserving that sporty trait of the car.
The cabin does look good, but it is too simplistic since there are not enough buttons and switches to play with. The passengers can relax listening to the music from a 14-speaker Harman Kardon stereo, but you will need to turn the volume up because of the engine that sounds like a diesel. The noise deadening materials improved things slightly, but otherwise, the unit really sounds terrible.
The 2018 Alfa Romeo Stelvio comes with the company’s new design language. Its body is soft and curvy, so it is less aggressive than some other SUVs, while the front is rounded, but it features all of the well-known hallmarks of the brand. Because of the short front and rear overhangs and some other body cues, the Stelvio manages to look compact. This is just a deception though, and Stelvio indeed doesn’t feel as large as some rivalry SUVs, but there is more than enough space in the cabin.
2018 Alfa Romeo Stelvio Price
The starting price of the 2018 Alfa Romeo Stelvio will be $42,990, while the Stelvio Ti will cost $44,990. The latter comes with more standard features, including an 8.8-inch widescreen display and heated front seats. There are two option packages – the Ti Sport and Ti Lusso package.
New Alfa Stelvio 2018 Release Date
The 2018 Stelvio will go on sale in the summer.