Alfa Romeo Stelvio review - can the Stelvio really compete with established rivals? - Alfa Romeo Stelvio design
Impressively dynamic and desirable SUV undone by quality niggles and odd styling.
We weren’t so sure about the Alfa Romeo Stelvio when first observing it spinning on a turntable at the 2016 Los Angeles auto show. That car was in full Quadrifoglio specification and wore large alloy wheels, a lower ride height and a chunky, body-colour bodykit. It looked large, bulky and a bit heavy-handed in its details - very far indeed from being an Alfa Romeo design classic.
But approaching the Stelvio for the first time in full production, non-Quadrifoglio form, we’re a lot more convinced. There are still some uncomfortable angles - the rear overhang always looks a little too long and overall it has the appearance and proportions of a jacked-up hatchback rather than a dedicated SUV, but in the right colours (metallic red and metallic blue are a good start) it’s quite a handsome vehicle.
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The contrasting wheel arch and bumper elements are a good start, reducing some of the visual bulk of body-coloured equivalents, while the Stelvio’s shape works well on slightly smaller-diameter wheels and chunkier tyres, as any good SUV should.
It goes without saying that with an enormous “Scudetto” grille and slim head- and tail-lights, it’s instantly recognisable as an Alfa too. Whether it’s a good thing that a brand like Alfa Romeo has had to resort to selling SUVs in order to compete is a different matter entirely...
In This Review
- 1Alfa Romeo Stelvio review - can the Stelvio really compete with established rivals?
- 2Alfa Romeo Stelvio performance and 0-60mph time
- 3Alfa Romeo Stelvio engine and transmission
- 4Alfa Romeo Stelvio ride and handling
- 5Alfa Romeo Stelvio MPG and running costs
- 6Alfa Romeo Stelvio interior and tech
- 7Alfa Romeo Stelvio design - currently reading