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2019 Alfa Romeo Stelvio Performance Review

Scorecard

Performance: 8.6

The 2019 Alfa Romeo Stelvio has pretty good overall performance for an SUV. Both engine options deliver plenty of power, and the handling is engaging and dynamic. The Stelvio also has a generally comfortable ride.

  • "The Stelvio is an SUV for people who love driving. It has a strong and responsive engine, a sporty transmission and engaging handling. It's of the more entertaining SUVs on the road." -- Edmunds
  • "To achieve this, Alfa has equipped the Stelvio with a 280 horsepower, 2.0-liter turbocharged engine, a ZF 8-speed gearbox and a sophisticated suspension setup. In addition the all-wheel-drive system will, in most cases, send all of the power to the rear wheels. The end result is a car that has enough power to feel sporty, if only just, and a transmission that gives you sharp ratio changes." -- CNET (2018)
  •  "The Alfa Romeo Stelvio feels very much like a bigger, taller Giulia. While this does mean that it feels a bit less nimble and frisky, it also means that it's one of the best drivers in its class." -- Autoblog (2018)

Acceleration and Power

The 2019 Stelvio comes standard with a 2.0-liter, turbocharged four-cylinder engine that produces 280 horsepower and 306 pound-feet of torque. The Stelvio Quadrifoglio comes with a 2.9-liter, twin-turbocharged V6 engine that produces 505 horsepower and 443 pound-feet of torque. An eight-speed automatic transmission and rear-wheel drive are standard, and all-wheel drive is optional. Fuel economy ratings are not yet available for the 2019 Stelvio.

With either engine, the Stelvio has great acceleration and lots of power to easily get up to high speeds. The transmission delivers smooth shifts, but it can sometimes upshift too soon and hesitate when downshifting.

  • "Power delivery is urgent. In Sport mode, the Stelvio is very responsive. Around town, you'll be hard-pressed to feel the difference between it and some vehicles with bigger engines. Our as-tested 0-60 mph time of 5.7 seconds puts the four-cylinder Stelvio within half a second of some heavy hitters. … The transmission shifts smoothly and promptly, and will hold a gear if you want it to in spirited driving. In Normal mode, it tends to be eager to upshift, but ultimately it's a good companion in traffic and when the road gets fun." -- Edmunds
  • "The thrum of the four cylinder sounds a bit like a hot hatchback from behind your head, but make no mistake, 280 horsepower is plenty for this SUV, and it hustles along nicely out of the corners, with the 8-speed flipping rapidly through the gears... on the up shift, that is. There can be some hesitation when manually selecting a lower gear, but overall, the ZF transmission is eager to play as well as operate silently in the background in Natural mode." -- New York Daily News (2018)
  •  +"Alfa has already reported that the Quadrifoglio's dual-turbo 2.9-liter V-6 will propel it to 60 mph in a scant 3.9 seconds, but the base Stelvio is no slouch. Without question, a 2.0-liter four-cylinder seems wee for an SUV, even turbocharged, but it's becoming more common. What's less common is what this 280-horsepower engine delivers: zero-to-60 mph in a claimed 5.4 seconds, which makes it quicker than base competitors, a large group including the BMW X3, Porsche Macan and Infiniti QX70 among others." -- Cars.com (2018)

Handling and Braking

The Stelvio comes standard with rear-wheel drive, and all-wheel drive is optional. The steering is quick and precise, though some critics wished it was heavier and that there was more feedback from the road. The ride is comfortable at low speeds and over most surfaces, but the stiff suspension results in a harsher ride at higher speeds.

  • "The steering is direct and accurate, and it feels naturally weighted with resistance that builds progressively through turns. There's just enough feedback to encourage spirited driving. It's a little heavier than some SUVs, but it's appropriate for the sporty Stelvio. On-center feel is quite good. … Ride quality is impressive for a sporty crossover. The Stelvio absorbs sharper bumps and road imperfections while still feeling connected to the road. It can get bouncy, especially on uneven concrete-slab freeways. Around town, it's one of the more comfortable sport-oriented crossovers." -- Edmunds
  • "Ride and handling are well-balanced, too. Steering is very quick, and the whole vehicle feels remarkably light. It leans significantly more than the Giulia in turns. But as crossovers go, the Stelvio is a great handler. The ride is on the stiff side, but far from punishing. I do wish the steering was a little heavier, and that the weight built up more progressively. It feels a little less communicative than I'd prefer. … Small inputs in the slightly overboosted Stelvio steering make the crossover feel light and maneuverable. It hides its weight well and feels pretty composed for a crossover." -- Autoblog (2018)
  • "What surprised me the most was how much the Stelvio truly handles like a car. Fitted with adaptive dampers on the Sport package and wearing those large wheels and low-profile rubber, the rear-drive bias on Alfa's SUV is prominent, and helps the two ton 'ute to rotate nicely through the corners. … While not quite as sharp as the Porsche Macan, or as solid as the Jaguar F-Pace, the Stelvio is more playful than the Jag, and feels altogether lighter on its feet than pretty much anything else in the segment." -- New York Daily News (2018)
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