Man’s World

Alfa Romeo Stelvio, the best of Italy

Alfa Romeo Stelvio

The first SUV by the Milanese brand is very convincing, both the more affordable versions and the incredible Quadrifoglio.

The Alfa Romeo Stelvio, on the market for just over a year now, was the model that for years had been missing from the Milanese brand’s range. With a length of just under 4.7 metres and a retail price starting from about €46,000, the Stelvio is the Italian alternative to the classic German-made SUVs, and it compares extremely well to the competition. From a technical viewpoint, this Alfa Romeo features solutions that place it right of the top of this category, such as the double wishbone front suspension or the carbon fibre prop shaft. But the real focus is on the way that it drives, true Alfa style, impossible to find in other SUVs of the same category. These qualities transcend the various engine options, basically a choice between the 200 or 280 HP 2-litre petrol versions, and the 150, 180 and 210 HP 2.2-litre diesel versions. They are rear-wheel or Q4 drive, and all have a 8-gear automatic transmission.

Alfa Romeo Stelvio

The amazing Stelvio Quadrifoglio calls for a special mention. This version has a Ferrari-based 2.9-litre twin-turbo V6 under the bonnet, generating 510 HP and 600 Nm torque that rockets the Stelvio from 0 to 100 km/h in 3.8 seconds and enables it to reach a top speed of 283 km/h. This model costs close on €100,000, and to date it holds the lap record at the legendary Nurburgring – acid test for all car manufacturers – as the fastest series SUV in the world. This primacy can be attributed to an original design scheme for which the Alfa Romeo engineers created a new modular platform for all the brand’s new models.

This technical innovation was launched with the Giulia, and it constitutes the foundations of rigidity and lightness on which the performance of the entire Stelvio family is constructed, not just the super-fast Quadrifoglio. The diesel version, though less powerful, nonetheless offers a surprisingly pleasant drive, starting from the steering of absolutely surgical precision. But the Stelvio has many more feathers to its bow, and the problems of quality that were once a notorious characteristic of Alfa Romeo cars are by now a distant memory. The electronic and digital equipment, for example, has nothing to envy the German competitors, while the quality of assembly and interior finish are all that you would expect from a car aimed at a level of premium quality.

Alessandro Vai

Alfa Romeo Stelvio