Alfa Romeo Stelvio: Evolving is art

Alfa Romeo’s Stelvio caused a sensation in the Sport Utility Vehicle (SUV) world when it was introduced. It was the dynamic brand’s first modern foray into the SUV market and it had to bring two Alfa Romeo hallmarks to this vehicle category: styling flare and driving dynamics – characteristics not easily associated with utility vehicles, sporty or not.

But Alfa Romeo achieved it. And these attributes are even more pronounced and successful in the new model for 2023. Available immediately in Veloce guise, the Alfa Romeo Stelvio pulls family styling cues together with its second SUV, the Tonale, providing a sensational experience for urban and extra-urban adventures.

'Evolving is performance art'

The Alfa Romeo Stelvio marks a significant milestone for the brand. It has evolved in both the brand’s trademark qualities — perfect weight balance, first-class driving dynamics, best-in-segment technological and engineering solutions — and in that 'timeless beauty' of Alfa Romeo Design, which is made to last and has created an authentic ‘artwork in motion'. The beauty provided by the Italian Design has been made even more appealing and contemporary by styling upgrades to the front of the Stelvio to create a clear and strong family connection with the Tonale.

The evolution of the Stelvio can be compared to 'Performance Art', a new form of art in which the artist's performance is carried out live in front of spectators. In a similar way, Alfa Romeo's 'mechanical creations' manifest themselves in real life, generating strong emotions and ensuring the best driving experience in the automotive world. But to remain contemporary and up to date, all automotive icons need to evolve, while still preserving the essence of the original design. So, while Alfa Romeo holds an enviable legacy dating back to 1910, the Stelvio is cutting edge and embodies that same performance ethos embedded in the brand for 113 years. 

No surprise then, that Alfa Romeo models always featured strongly in illustrations of “Futurism” in the 1920s and ‘30s.  Art is considered as the ultimate expression of a timeless aesthetic culture. And the Stelvio is no exception, as it represents state-of-the-art aesthetics and technology in its own category and will continue to be a benchmark for Alfa Romeo’s reinvention of sportiness for the 21st century.

A new “look” 

Standing out on the front of the Stelvio, the front grille (where the logo is positioned) and the lower grilles of the two main air ducts have been given a unique finish, which provides a contemporary reinterpretation of the famous and distinctive “Trilobo” grille.  In fact, the headlights are the main new feature on the front: the “3+3” lights are new Full-LED Adaptive Matrix headlights. This creates both a strong family connection with the Tonale and, at the same time, recalls one of the brand’s famous features which was introduced by the iconic Alfa Romeo SZ Zagato of the 1990s and the Alfa Romeo Pro-teo concept car. The three modules make up the Stelvio’s unique frontline and supply day-light, a dynamic turn signal, and the “Welcome and Goodbye" device (a function which turns on every time the driver closes or opens the car). 

These ensure the best lighting conditions thanks to the introduction of two sophisticated technologies: the “Adaptive Driving Beam”, which constantly adjusts the dipped beam headlights based on the speed and driving conditions; the “Glare-Free High Beam Segmented Technology”, which automatically detects both directions of traffic to avoid blinding the other cars; and finally, the third module automatically turns on when turning in curves to guarantee the best lateral lighting. All of this means more efficiency—in terms of duration and energy savings—and greater safety due to less stress on the eyes and increased driving comfort.  

The layout of the group of rear LED taillights provides the perfect combination of style and sophisticated technologies, accentuating the Stelvio’s sporty soul. The Stelvio has new taillights in glass with a transparent finish.

The new, completely digital instrument panel

The Stelvio is equipped with the most cutting-edge technology to ensure a comfortable and connected experience, while simultaneously providing the trademark pleasure of driving an Alfa Romeo. The most significant update can be seen in the instrument panel with its historic “telescopic” design. It includes the new, completely digital 12.3” TFT screen, where one can access all the vehicle’s information. Moreover, the cluster can be reconfigured into three layouts: Evolved, Relax, and Heritage. Evolved represents the future of Alfa Romeo design and uses the central area of the screen, despite keeping its two lateral quadrants in place. Relax focuses on comfort, is free of detailed vehicle information, and goes without the two quadrants. Heritage is inspired by the brand’s iconic Sixties’ and Seventies’ models, with distinctive details like inverted numbers at the end of the speedometer.

Best-in-class driving dynamics

The driving dynamics of Alfa Romeo’s Stelvio continues to lead the segment and provides a visceral driving experience in authentic Alfa Romeo spirit. That means the right balance between Italian design, state-of-the-art engines, perfect weight distribution, special technological solutions and an excellent power/weight ratio. The essence of Alfa Romeo’s current and past models comes from this “magic” formula which, since the Tonale (the symbol of the brand’s metamorphosis), has been evolving to redefine 21st century sportiness to include sustainability. All it takes is sitting down in a Stelvio to understand that one is about to enter the future of driving.

Lightness and agility: the Stelvio’s flawless and sporty dynamic behavior is supported by the wide use of ultra-light materials like aluminum (used extensively in the engines) and carbon fibre (used for the drive shaft), features taken directly from the world of racing. 

All-wheel drive with Q4 technology

Designed to manage the vehicle’s traction in a reactive and predictive way to ensure the highest levels in terms of performance, efficiency and safety, the Q4 technology guarantees all the benefits of all-wheel drive and, simultaneously, guarantees reduced fuel usage, reactivity and the pleasure of driving a rear-wheel drive vehicle. At the heart of the Q4 system is the Active Transfer Case (ATC) that monitors grip conditions and driver inputs in real time to ensure the best performance. 

Alfa Romeo’s Q4 system allows the vehicle to travel completely in rear-wheel drive and, if tyre grip is approaching its traction limit or according to a specific driver request, instantly delivers up to 50% of the engine torque to the front in less than 150ms. This virtually eliminates any wheel slip in most conditions and ensures maximum vehicle performance and driving effectiveness.

Alfa Link suspension

Driving an Alfa Romeo is an unforgettable sensation. Stelvio achieves this in the SUV segment thanks to the use of the exclusive Alfa Link™ suspension architecture. On the front, double wishbones with a semi-virtual steering axis (an Alfa Romeo exclusive) optimises dynamics and allows quick steering precision for uncompromised handling. On the rear, a multilink solution was opted for, with four and a half arms - an Alfa Romeo patent - that offers enhanced handling combined with excellent comfort. 

Integrated Braking System (IBS)

The electromechanical braking system combines stability control with the braking system, guaranteeing an instantaneous response of the brakes, reducing stopping distances and allowing for significant weight optimisation. The use of the brake-by-wire system allows for a notable reduction of the components inside the engine compartment with a single hardware unit made up of a pump, power brakes and ESP.

Contributing to the Stelvio’s stellar driving dynamics is the extremely direct steering which has been paired with an 8-speed ZF automatic transmission with aluminum shift paddles, guaranteeing unparalleled handling in curves. And, finally, for the perfect balance between driving pleasure and assistance systems, the Stelvio offers a complete set of Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS) as an option. This means that the driver can let the vehicle control the accelerator, brake, and steering wheel in certain conditions via electronic systems that require constant monitoring by the driver. These systems support the driver and offer greater comfort during long journeys. 

Peace of mind

The Alfa Romeo Stelvio Veloce offers peace of mind motoring for five years or 100,000km thank to its warranty and maintenance plan. To be joined later in the year by the Stelvio Q, the Veloce model - available immediately - retails at R1,205,500 with the option of a sunroof at R20 000