Most people will remember the first time they saw the Alfa Romeo Stelvio. It is unforgettable on first glance, you’d like to see it up close and not take your eyes off it for a while. All because of Alfa Romeo’s iconic approach to its sharp exterior design.
When you are in the compact luxury urban SUV class, there is not a lot of competition, but the likes of Lexus RX 450, BMW X3, Jaguar F-Pace and the Mercedes-Benz GLC are lurking around the corner with each one of them offering something special.
Where the Alfa Romeo Stelvio beats everyone is its agility and handling. It might not be the fastest or the most comfortable rides but certainly the best handling. This car is built for winding mountain roads & sharp bends with a non-existing body roll. Stelvio has amazing road grip combined with precise handling that wins heart and soul.
Equipped with the 3 drive modes DNA, (Dynamic, Natural and Advanced Efficiency) you get quite a few flavors in one car. If are to you enjoy driving, I’d say hit the Dynamic mode. The acceleration is better, brake response is quicker and the handling is much more agile.
The Natural and the Advanced Efficiency drive modes are good for saving fuel. In our one week of test driving this car, we noticed a difference of 20% less fuel consumed when using the Advanced Efficiency modes in comparison to the Dynamic drive mode. The speed to gear ratio also dramatically changes once you shift from Dynamic to Advanced Efficiency drive modes.
Alfa Romeo Stelvio is an all-wheel drive but not much of an off-roader. While the ground clearance is pretty decent, the 2.0 liter engine feels underpowered the moment you leave the tarmac. It is ok to go on unpaved mountain trails but not in the desert.
Luggage space is also ok but in comparison to other luxury urban SUV’s in its class; it is on the smaller side. I did fit in one large suitcase and a couple of small ones easily though.
Engine: 2.0 Liter – 4 Cylinder Turbocharged
Horsepower: 280 Bhp
Torque: 400 Nm
Drive System: All Wheel Drive
Transmission: 8 speed automatic
The looks on the Alfa Romeo Stelvio put all of its competitors to shame. It is far more appealing than the Lexus RX, Audi Q5 and the BMW X3 combined.
The seating for all passengers is comfortable, though the upholstery feels a bit stiff. The sporty and vibrant red leather interior and hand stitching around the cabin makes the overall fit and finish acceptable but not something you’d expect from a vehicle at this price point. Actually, in comparison to any vehicle of its class, its probably ranked as the least luxurious.
The dashboard is made of hardened rubber and you see shiny aluminum accents on the airconditioning vents which are the highlights of the cabin design along with the beautiful panoramic sunroof.There are aluminum paddle shifters behind the steering wheel on each side and they are somehow placed too close the indicator turn signals. You’d have to get used to this arrangement.
Stelvio’s steering wheel is practical yet basic and does not feel premium upon touch. Even the buttons on it feel a bit cheap. It does give the driver adequate amount of feedback on what is happening on the road though.
The infotainment system features Apple CarPlay and Android Autoplay but otherwise is pretty elementary. The eight speaker audio system is nice but the 8.8 inch display screen has limited options and is not even HD. I honestly was taken aback by this bit. Was I in a Wrangler or the Stelvio?
Driver assistance features include a very effective forward collision warning, automatic emergency braking, rearview camera with grid lines for ease, rear parking sensors and rain-sensing automatic windshield wipers.
Seating is fairly comfortable for the rear passengers with adequate leg and head room. Its a compact SUV, if you keep that mind, you cant really complain of space. However, if you were to install a rear facing baby seat, the front seat has to go all the way forward. Otherwise 5 people can comfortably sit in the car.