The Alfa Romeo Stelvio Will Fulfill All Your High-Horsepower Family-Hauling Needs

The Quadrifoglio model borrows its 510-horsepower turbocharged V6 from the Giulia.

byAaron BrownNov 16, 2016 4:43 PM
The Alfa Romeo Stelvio Will Fulfill All Your High-Horsepower Family-Hauling Needs

Right now is a fantastic time to be an obnoxiously-fast SUV enthusiast. There's the Range Rover Sport SVR, the Tesla Model X P100D, Porsche Cayenne Turbo, the Bentley Bentayga and now, the Alfa Romeo Stelvio, which in the Quadrifoglio trim, has 510-horsepower and can do zero to 60 in 3.9 seconds.

Named after Italy's Stelvio Pass – a road 9,000 feet in the sky with more hairpin corners than one can count – on paper, the ute sounds like it will be competent as both a people-mover and a highway-ruler. The car will be offered in three different trims: Stelvio, Stelvio Ti, and Stelvio Quadrifoglio. The latter is the one you'll want.

While the Stelvio and the Ti trims pack a 280-hp turbocharged 2.0-liter inline-four, the Quadrifoglio has the Giulia's 510-hp, 2.9-liter turbocharged V6 which rips to 60 in 3.9 seconds and allows for a top speed of 177 miles-per-hour. Properly quick for a decently-sized SUV. All trim levels come standard with an all-wheel-drive system that can push 60 percent of the car's torque to the front wheels when required, and an eight-speed automatic transmission.

The vehicles also use the Alfa DNA drive mode control, allowing the driver to choose Natural, Dynamic, or Advanced Efficiency car configurations while on the fly. The Quadrifoglio gets an additional Race mode, which has us salivating. When engaged in Race mode, the turbos are able to overboost, the dual-mode exhaust opens up, stability control goes off. Inputs through the steering and brake systems become more aggressive, and the transmission and throttle config harshens up. So pretty much everything you'll want and then some.

The Quadrifoglio is also treated to a torque-vectoring rear diff, beefier brakes, unique wheels, and a sportier performance suspension setup. For the interior, there's trim-specific carbon fiber finish, a flat-bottom leather-wrapped steering wheel, and sporty-looking 12-way adjustable seats which can be swapped out for lightweight carbon-fiber Sparcos. Carbon ceramic brakes are also optional.

Bringing an SUV to the three-car lineup is an important one for Alfa Romeo, especially in the United States, where people can't get enough of their hulking, screamingly expeditious crossovers.