The Alfa Romeo Stelvio SUV has arrived in South Africa. That’s right, Alfa Romeo has produced an SUV. It’s not the first time, though: back in 2003, the sport-heritage brand released the Kamal concept, but the Alfa Romeo Stelvio is its first ever consumer-focused 4°—4 SUV – an offering that promises to be just as formidable as the Jaguar F-Pace and Porsche Macan.
Built on the same platform as the successful Giulia, the Alfa Romeo Stelvio is inspired by the iconic mountain pass of the same name in the Italian Alps – the highest driveable one in the country. The SUV represents the Italian passion for driving and panache, which is just what you’d expect from a brand that is synonymous with style, flair and pure enjoyment for being out on the open road.
The design is truly Alfa Romeo. Starting with a blank sheet of paper, exterior head designer Alessandro Maccolini managed to strike a new harmony between the brand’s defining features and a modern, sporty language. ‘The Stelvio and Giulia were born more or less at the same time, and have similar styling ingredients while retaining two completely distinct identities,’ says Maccolini.
To underline this beauty, customers can choose from 11 body colours (pastel, metallic and tri-coated) that highlight the SUV’s streamlined shape. On the inside, you’re surrounded by Italian elegance. Although there are a few cheaper-looking materials that could have been swapped out with leather (especially over the dashboard), the overall look and feel is that of refined simplicity. Also noticeable is how spacious it is inside.
The potential passengers have really been taken into account – and it shows. Powering the Alfa Romeo Stelvio is a 2.0ℓ turbocharged petrol engine that produces 206kW of power and 400Nm of torque. The SUV isn’t exactly made for performance – it’s almost too comfortable to be – but it can certainly handle being thrown into mountainous corners at speed, so the fun element is not completely lost.
The more affordable of the two Alfa Romeo Stelvios on offer is the Super, which will set you back R810 000. The First Edition adds on to the Super’s features list and costs R946 000. But if it is performance you’re after, wait for the QV version, which is due out later in 2018. It will be interesting to see how the Alfa Romeo Stelvio stacks up against other strong competitors in this segment, but one thing is for sure, it will certainly stand out from the crowd in terms of design. And let’s be honest, most true petrolheads have Alfa Romeo very close to their hearts.
under the bonnet
Model: Alfa Romeo Stelvio First Edition
Engine: 2.0ℓ turbocharged petrol, 206kW, 400Nm, 0-100km/h in 5.7 seconds
Combined fuel consumption: 7ℓ/100km
Luggage compartment: 525ℓ
Price: from R946 000