2018 Alfa Romeo Stelvio - Must-have Segment Gets an Italian Twist

Steph Willems
by Steph Willems
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2018 alfa romeo stelvio must have segment gets an italian twist

Automakers have an easy way of determining which new model is guaranteed to make the company money. If the answer to the simple question “Is it an SUV?” is a clear, definite “yes,” well, that’s a good enough indicator for most.

Alfa Romeo knows that in this day and age, not including an SUV in its lineup would be the kiss of death, hence the need for the 2018 Stelvio. Revealed in images on the eve of its Los Angeles Auto Show debut, the Stelvio borrows the face, platform and performance characteristics of its midsize sedan stablemate, the oft-delayed Giulia.

Sporting Italian lines that make vehicles built north of the Alps look frumpy and bureaucratic in comparison, Alfa Romeo also hopes the Stelvio temps buyers with what’s underneath its dress.

Expect several Stelvio flavors when the model appears on U.S. shores in the middle of next year. At the low end, base and Ti trims receive a 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder producing 280 horsepower and 306 lb-ft of torque. Mated to an all-wheel-drive system, the entry-level mill should be good for a 144 mile-per-hour top speed. The only transmission offered is an eight-speed automatic.

All but the top-flight Quadrifoglio model contain a drive mode system offering three ranges – Dynamic, Natural, and Advanced Efficiency. Move up to the Quadrifoglio if you can’t live without a “Race” mode.

Buyers of the crème de la crème Stelvio stand to enjoy more than just an extra driving mode and upgraded content. Like the Giulia Quadrifoglio, the SUV’s top-tier trim also benefits from a twin-turbocharged 2.9-liter V6, good for 505 horsepower and 443 pound-feet of torque. Alfa claims the boosted mill should rocket the Stelvio to 60 mph in a scant 3.9 seconds. (There’s also a 177 mph top speed for the daring and brave to discover.)

Helping the Quadrifoglio remain planted during spirited are an adaptive suspension, torque-vectoring differential and wide rubber on 20-inch wheels. Ceramic brakes aid the less-exhilarating act of stopping, while the V6 can run on three cylinders if your right foot proves light enough on the highway.

Pricing has yet to be announced.

[Images: Alfa Romeo]

Steph Willems
Steph Willems

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2 of 36 comments
  • NeilM NeilM on Nov 16, 2016

    Stelvio is a good name for a sporting Italian marque such as Alfa — but I'll pass.

  • Magnusmaster Magnusmaster on Nov 16, 2016

    Another underwhelming design. The front looks awesome, but the rear is ugly. Those rear lights don't fit with the rest of the car.

  • SCE to AUX Another outsourced battery goes awry.
  • Jkross22 Nah, If I needed a truck, I'd get a Nissan titan or for nearly the same money a 20 yr old SR5.
  • Kwik_Shift No. It is hideous and jarring to look at. Why would I need this anyway?
  • Jeff From the side profile this gives off Taurus wagon vibes. Nice looking wagon love the exterior color and the interior. The burled walnut interior trim is beautiful.
  • Jeff I think initially there will be a lot of orders for this truck and then sales will crater. Those that want this truck mainly the Tesla fans will buy them and then anyone that wanted one will have already bought one. The Cybertruck kind of reminds me of the Delorean which was widely anticipated and once it was out and those who wanted a Delorean bought one that was the end. Both the Delorean and Cybertruck are stainless steel and both are weird looking. Maybe they could release a new Back to the Future sequence and have Doc drive a Cybertruck.