Powering the Stelvio is a 2.0L direct injection turbocharged 4-cylinder. It's the same engine that powers the Giulia, making 280 horsepower and an exceptional 306 lb-ft of torque. All that torque makes the Stelvio feel spry, even at low RPM's. Despite all that power and torque, the Stelvio's relatively small displacement engine helps give the Stelvio a weight distribution that is close to the ideal 50/50 split between front and back. Power from that engine is sent to all four wheels via an 8-speed automatic. The upcoming Quadrifoglio model also uses an engine borrowed from the Giulia, a 505-horsepower 2.9L twin-turbo V6. Acceleration is good with either engine, but obviously with over 500 horsepower, the Quadrifoglio is exceptionally quick, and not just for an SUV.
The Stelvio comes in four basic trims, not including the Quadrifoglio. The base trim, simply dubbed "Stelvio AWD" comes well equipped with leather seats, a backup camera, keyless go, passive entry and a remote starting system free of cost. Other standard items on the Stelvio AWD include power, 6-way driver and passenger seats, an 8-speaker sound system with a 6.5-inch touch screen, dual rear USB ports, a front USB port, Bluetooth connectivity, a 7-inch full color display gauge cluster, a universal garage door opener, rain sensing wipers, bi-xenon headlamps and LED tail lamps and 18-inch aluminum wheels.
The Stelvio Sport AWD adds a couple of thousand dollars to the base price. In addition to the base model, the Sport comes with aluminum paddle shifters, 19-inch wheels, a sportier feeling steering wheel wrapped in leather, as well as various black exterior accents around the windows and for the roof rails.
The Stelvio Ti comes with nicer interior accoutrements than the Sport AWD, though it only costs a couple of hundred dollars more. The Ti features dark grey oak interior trimming along with a bigger 8.8-inch widescreen display for the infotainment system. Heated front seats and a heated steering wheel are included.
The top of the line Ti Sport AWD combines the best of all worlds, with the exterior black accents from the Sport combined with the nicer infotainment system and heated seats. It also gets nicer 20-inch aluminum wheels.
The Quadrifoglio trim transforms the Stelvio from a sporty fun to drive SUV into a monster. Its 505 horsepower helps the Stelvio Quadrifoglio achieve a claimed top speed of 177 mph. It's not all about straight line speed though, the Quadrifoglio has massive brakes and super sticky tires; enough to achieve incredibly quick lap times if the Stelvio Quadrifoglio were to end up on a race track.
You sport a Bottega Veneta coat, a Moschino bag and shoes from Ferragamo. Shouldn't your car show off similar Italian flair, maybe with a badge featuring Milanese heritage? Alfa Romeo's growing presence in the US market makes that more of an option every day, and nothing in its lineup is more practical than the 2018 Stelvio.
As a small SUV, the Stelvio carries five passengers and their luggage, from Bric's I assume. Surprisingly, it competes well on price with other premium SUVs, but comes up a little short on driving dynamics and electronics.
We first saw the 2018 Alfa Romeo Stelvio at last year's Los Angeles auto show, where it joined the existing lineup of the Giulia sedan and 4C sports car. The body of the Stelvio presents a very clean design, with smooth metal around the headlight and taillight casings and an inset hood. The triangular grille highlights Alfa Romeo style.
The Good The 2018 Alfa Romeo Stelvio rides comfortably, with a soft ride and easy response to steering and throttle inputs. Alfa Romeo design stands out, especially at the Stelvio's front. All-wheel-drive comes standard.
The Bad The Stelvio's in-dash electronics lack connected features, such as online destination search, and Apple CarPlay and Android Auto is listed as "Late availability". Its idle-stop feature doesn't work as seamlessly as competitors'.
The Bottom Line The 2018 Alfa Romeo Stelvio looks good and drives well, but often feels like it's getting by on style more than substance, as its sport performance is only middling and cabin technology only covers the basics.
Faulty software in the Italian sport sedan and SUV could lead to gas gauges that say they have more fuel than they do.
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The recall stems from an issue with the car's adaptive cruise control.
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