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The Alfa Romeo Stelvio Quadrifoglio is a performance SUV that packs big horsepower, Italian styling and all-wheel drive. Here’s what else is worth knowing, courtesy of A Tribe Called Cars.

If excitement is what you want from a car, SUVs are usually the last place to go. Hell, just for driving pleasure you are usually better off looking elsewhere.

But SUVs are the big thing right now, haven’t you heard, and so everbody is making one. Including, rather bizarrely, Bentley, Ferrari and Lamborghini. But not McLaren – at least, not yet anyway.

Slightly lower down the pecking order in terms of prestige and price is the Alfa Romeo Stelvio Quadrifoglio, which I drove at the UK launch in Edinburgh. Yet the cloverleaf-badged Italian SUV is certainly not shy when it comes to speed. Or noise.

Nor is it cheap as you find out in my video, but it is quicker than all of its nearest competitors – of which there are few – and I’d argue it has more style. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, of course, and almost certainly somebody will bring up the issue of reliability just to knock it down a peg or two.

While it is too early to talk about whether the Alfa Romeo Stelvio Quadrifoglio will break down every five minutes or not, I can fill you in on some of the basics before my full review.

1) Speed is no issue

Alfa Romeo Stelvio Quadrifoglio

Despite being heavier than the Giulia Quadrifoglio and powered by the same 503bhp 2.9-litre Bi-turbo V6 that develops 442lb/ft of torque and fitted with the same ZF eight-speed automatic, the Stelvio Quaddy can do 0-62mph faster 3.8 seconds instead of 3.9.

That is just two-tenths slower than the Lamborghini Urus. The top speed, meanwhile, is 176mph – 13mph slower than that aforementioned far pricier Italian SUV.

2) All-wheel drive is standard

Alfa Romeo Stelvio Quadrifoglio

Q4 all-wheel drive helps make up for the extra weight gain over the Giulia Quadrifoglio coupe. Typically power is sent to the rear wheels but up to 50 per cent can be sent to the front when extra traction is needed. Such as in the rain or when it snows. Or you’ve just got a really heavy right foot, which is tempting in this car.

3) It’s less thirsty than you would imagine

Alfa Romeo Stelvio Quadrifoglio engine bay (2.9-litre biturbo V6)

Contrary to popular belief, the ‘A’ part of the DNA selector in the Stelvio Quadrifoglio stands for Added Efficiency Mode and not All-weather. Easing into this mode deactivates two cylinders so you get better fuel economy and a quieter drive at the expense of performance.

We saw the miles per gallon average reach the mid to high twenties during my Edinburgh test drive, which is impressive for an SUV with that much horsepower and considering I was making little effort to be efficient.

You can, of course, just slap it into Dynamic or Race and enjoy as much noise and power as possible. But not necessarily the harshest ride, thanks to that little suspension button in the middle of the selector, which softens the ride.

4) It has all the connectivity

Alfa Romeo Stelvio Quadrifoglio (Apple CarPlay supported)

The infotainment system in the clover-leaf-badged Alfa Romeo Stelvio Quadrifoglio and other new Alfas could be better, particularly where navigation is concerned. Luckily, then, you can connect your phone using either Android Auto, Apple CarPlay or Alfa Connect.

5) You can buy it for this much

Alfa Romeo Stelvio Quadrifoglio review exterior three-quarters

So how much for the Alfa Romeo Stelvio Quadrifoglio? £69,500 before extras, which is a lot of cash for a mid-sized SUV, admittedly. But then bear in the mind the equivalent Porsche Macan Turbo is about the same but considerably slower.

The Jaguar F-Pace S, meanwhile, is cheaper, more spacious and great to drive but no way near as quick either.
As a result, the Stelvio Quaddy is actually a bit of a bargain, especially when you consider you could buy two of them for the price of the Urus – and end up with something that doesn’t sound like a body part.

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About The Author


Ben Griffin is a motoring journalist and founder of the website and YouTube channel, A Tribe Called Cars. He is also a contributor at DriveTribe.

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