Stelvio is the slick new SUV that does things a little bit differently
Power is driven to them via an eight-speed automatic gearbox, and there’s a decent amount of torque generated by the engine to keep the whole affair pushed along - 470Nm in fact, which is a good slug of pushing power for a car of this size.
WHAT’S IT LIKE TO DRIVE? As mentioned, the Stelvio’s been designed to sit on the more dynamic end of the SUV spectrum, and as such rides and drives in a slightly different way to a conventional four-wheel-drive.
The ride suffers a little at low speeds, with its overall firmness transferring imperfections on the road surface into the cabin. It means that when pottering around town, the Stelvio feels a little unsettled.
However, as you increase in speed, the car’s suspension begins to make sense, where it manages body roll well and allows you to corner confidently.
The steering is, as mentioned, quite quick too, and this gives the whole car an eagerness when turning in - again, another plus point when travelling at faster speeds.
HOW DOES IT LOOK? The Stelvio has been infused with all of the design touches you’d expect from an Alfa Romeo. There’s the large triangle grille at the front, angled headlights and, of course, the all-important offset number plate.
It’s a good-looking design, and markedly different to the remaining offerings in the SUV segment.
Our test car also featured yellow brake calipers and 19-inch 10-spoke alloy wheels, which aided the overall sporty look.
Certainly, against the rounded silhouettes of cars such as the Porsche Macan and BMW X3, the Stelvio’s edgy styling makes it stand out.
The rear end of the car is particularly strong, with large (really quite large, in fact) exhaust pipes giving the car a particularly sporty appearance.
WHAT’S IT LIKE INSIDE? The interior of the Stelvio covers the basics well; the steering position is good, the steering wheel has plenty of adjustment and the electric front seats can be set to exactly the right position with little effort.
There are harsher plastics here, for sure - the material used for the gearshift surround is quite hard, and the gearstick has an annoyingly sharp edge to it, but for the most part it’s a comfortable and well-made place to be.
The rear seats offer plenty of space, and though the sloped roofline does cut into headroom levels somewhat, there should more than enough for average-sized passengers.
The Stelvio does well in terms of boot space as well, with its 525 litres of seats-up capacity trumping that of the Porsche Macan.
WHAT’S THE SPEC LIKE? Prices for the 2.2-litre diesel-powered Giulia start at £38,490, and there’s a lot of standard equipment included as part of this price. You get 18-inch alloy wheels, front and rear parking sensors and a lane departure warning system included, as well as a power tailgate and an eight-speaker sound system.
Our test car featured the larger, eight-inch infotainment screen (a smaller seven-inch unit is included in lower-spec models), and this houses features such as satellite navigation and media functions. It’s easy to navigate thanks to a simple rotary controller, but it lacks the definition of rival offerings - it looks just a few generations behind other infotainment systems currently available.