2018 Alfa Romeo Stelvio Quadrifoglio new car reviews

To survive as a sports car manufacturer these days, you pretty much have to offer an SUV as well–something that’s going to add black numbers to the bottom line. Porsche does it. So does Lamborghini and Maserati. Now let’s welcome Alfa Romeo to the club.

Their entry is the Stelvio. In their words: “An SUV born from a racing pedigree.”

According to the all-knowing internet, it pretty much lives up to that statement as a Stelvio Quadrifoglio lapped Nürburgring in 7:51.7 seconds, setting a record for the world’s fastest production SUV. That’s a tenth faster than Autosport’s lap in a Lamborghini Gallardo LP 560-4.

Our tester was the top-of-the-line Quadrifoglio AWD model. Instead of the standard 280-horsepower, turbocharged inline-four it gets the 505-horsepower, twin-turbo, 2.9-liter V6. Base price for the Quadrifoglio AWD is $79,795. The biggest extra on ours was $2200 for the tri-coat paint. Then add a few bucks for things like a Driver Assist Dynamic Plus Package ($1500), carbon-fiber steering wheel ($400) and Apple CarPlay ($100). Total price was $85,890.

Other staff views

Tim Suddard Tim Suddard
Publisher

As a racer, you might initially think you want an all-out, hard-edged, near race car-level performance out of everything you drive.

As we found out recently with the 2018 Alfa Romeo Stelvia Quadrofoglio, you need to be careful what you wish for. The Stelvia is fast, like real fast... at about four seconds 0-60. With AWD, it is also nearly that fast in the rain, which is impressive.

The Stevia also corners with near race car levels of grip. The ride, while better than the 4C we tested recently, would get rather tiring in the real world of daily commuting.

The Stelvia’s styling is quite attractive, especially for an SUV and drew admiring glances and comments from nearly everyone we encountered. The interior is downright gorgeous with red stitching, carbon fiber and a host of other nice touches. The race-type seats were very supportive when flinging the Stevia around corners but were a bit much for daily driving.

So, if you want a good-looking, fast-as-hell SUV that you can still take to Lowe’s and pick up lumber with, the Stelvia Quadrofoglio might be just what you are looking for. If you have any real commute, you might back it off a notch and stick with a more mundane SUV.

J.G. Pasterjak JG Pasterjak
Production/Art Director

The Alfa Stelvio currently holds the SUV lap record of the Nurburgring and I almost totally don’t care. It’s a record akin to being the most watched episode of “Mama’s Family” or “World’s Greatest Grandpa.”

To be clear, I do not hate SUVs. My wife’s Mazda CX-5 is practical, legitimately rewarding and responsive to drive, and easy to live with. The Stelvio sells out any long-term usefulness by making a push for performance which is fine, I guess. I mean, it’s basically a track car, with a wicked twin-turbo V6 and deeply bolstered seats and a quick-shifting paddlebox and zoomy sounds and whatnot… But it’s not a track car. It’s an SUV. And the cool performance stuff kind of makes it bad at being a real car.

I guess it’s cool it exists, but I see the novelty wearing off pretty fast after you have to clamber into those seats a few times and put up with the stiff ride and “OMG KIDS, DID YOU SEE ME CRUSH THAT APEX BETWEEN PANERA AND LOWE’S!?!?!”

So, congrats, Alfa, on building a really awesome thing that probably doesn’t need to exist, but is still pretty cool, but if you want to make a real impact, apply the same model to a true station wagon and I will be your best friend forever.

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Comments
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Fueled by Caffeine
Fueled by Caffeine MegaDork
5/29/18 2:35 p.m.

Just an FYI.. Tim calls the car a Stelvia and Stevia in his comments.. Is it so unmemorable that he can't even remember the name? cheeky

 

 

dherr
dherr HalfDork
5/29/18 3:05 p.m.

 

Well if I had only one vehicle...... needed it to do everything and had money to burn, this might be the perfect compromise. I have the same thoughts about the Porsche SUV's, the Macan looks amazing but it is much cheaper and practical to have an old Suburban for when we need to haul a trailer or lumber and then sedans and sports cars for the fun stuff......

Duke
Duke MegaDork
5/29/18 3:09 p.m.

Are they allowed to sell the Stelvia now?

A friend made a deal on one earlier this year and went to the dealer to sign the papers and take delivery.  The sales manager basically said, "We're very sorry, sir, but Alfa Romeo corporate just told us there is a safety issue and we're not allowed to sell Stelvias until further notice."  They couldn't / wouldn't give him any info on potential fixes or when they would be available.

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