Yet tright here it is, on the unblinking display of our experimentation computer: 3.3 secs in the 0-60, 8.5 secs from 0 to 100, and also a quarter mile in 11.8 seconds.

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The 505-hp Alfa Romeo Stelvio Quadrifoglio is virtually the quickest gasoline-sustained SUV we"ve ever tested—it ties the 707-hp Jeep Grand also Cherokee Trackhawk to 60 and also is an eye blink slower to 100 and also the quarter mile. And both those SUVs get pipped by the Tesla Model X P90D Ludicrous in launch mode. But as soon as it comes to high-end SUVs—even ones via performance credentials—the Stelvio simply dusts them.

What"s even more, even though it weighs about 500 pounds more than its identically powered Giulia Quadrifoglio sedan stablemate and has a greater coeffective of drag, the Stelvio is much faster to all these turning points.

Looking at their corresponding weight-to-power ratios, this must not be feasible. The Giulia carries 7.5 pounds per each horsepower. The Stelvio carries 8.5 pounds per each horsepower. Race should go to the sedan, right? However, the Stelvio has all-wheel drive, while the Giulia has actually rear-wheel drive. In the crucial 0-30-mph "launch" phase, the Giulia demands 1.5 seconds, yet the Stelvio takes just 1.2 to acquire tbelow, according to Chris Walton, Motor Trend"s road test editor.

That at an early stage momentum helps that 0.3-second gap stretch to 0.5 second by 60 mph—the Stelvio gets tright here in 3.3 secs to the Giulia"s 3.8 seconds. Ultimately, the Giulia begins to charge earlier with much less frontal area (better aerodynamics) and also much less weight. By the end of the quarter mile, the Alfa SUV still wins the race in 11.8 secs at 116.1 mph, and although the sedan is charging difficult at a much faster speed of 118.5 mph, it crosses the line in 12.2 secs. Here"s hoping we eventually learn exactly how quick the Giulia would be if they equipped it with the all-wheel drive from the Stelvio.

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The Stelvio is more than simply jamming 505 horses and 443 lb-ft under the hood of this $97,390 beastern and also letting it rip in Race mode. (Heck, what type of SUV even has a Race mode?)

The tricky point in building SUVs is that they are essentially boxes on wheels. It"s difficult to offer them personality. Alfa Romeo has no such troubles. Spin the Quadrifoglio"s drive-mode dial to Dynamic and also offer it complete throttle, and also you discover a stream of power on instant demand, gearshifts punctuated by a flatulent chortle from the exhaust. You barely should roll right into the accelerator to access this thrust. The engine always appears to be in the meat of the powerband also, though it does reach redline too easily.

But the Stelvio is more than simply a straight-line rocket. This thing deserve to scoot with switchbacks in a more created fashion than many kind of sporty cars. You"d think a two-box SUV would be plagued by body roll under tough cornering, however the Stelvio stays pancake flat. However before, while dynamic suspension settings are terrific for solo torching of ago roads, you may sometimes have passengers who thrill to the engine note yet who don"t wish to endure an overly rigid suspension—thus the appeal of the Stelvio"s soft-damper setting in dynamic mode. Or you have the right to wimp out and put it in Natural mode.

"The sense of immediacy provides it feel a thousand also pounds lighter than it is," Walton sassist. "I love the seat, the steering wheel, the actual steel transition paddles. It"s gorgeous, and also prefer the Giulia, it supplies a romantic alternate to the mainstream. It"s a freakin" rocket."

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As for protecting against, although the $8,000 Brembo ultra-high-performance carbon-ceramic brakes were outstanding in their grip and also precision at high speeds, they were brutal in everyday driving. You can forgain about limousine stops or easing through parking lots. The Brembos are choppy and abrupt in regimen traffic, with a disquieting rippling feedearlier to the brake pedal. When having actually to make a harder-than-intended speak after a stretch of city driving via light braking, the Brembos groan choose an 18-wheeler rolling into a Flying J stall.

"They feel prefer first-gen carbon ceramics unified with the on/off switch of brake-by-wire," Walton said. "There"s zero feel, they"re grabby, and also when cold, they"re screechy and also grindy. It has an extra-firm brake pedal with extremely brief take a trip, prompt jump-in with zero feel with the pedal, and exceptionally little bit ABS buzz or flutter."

However, tright here is no arguing with results. Our 60-0 brake tests netted 109, 103, 107, and also 107 feet—outstanding for a 4,282-pound SUV. "Eincredibly soptimal was dead straight," Walton listed.

Keeping you in location under these serious forces are Sparco carbon-fiber-shelled sport seats. With a grip firmer than a straightjacket (dimension 42 or smaller sized, please), you"re not going almost everywhere. And because they are racing seats, they need to be adjusted fore and aft manually (first world problems). The cool point around the skinny Sparcos is that for back-seat passengers, the Stelvio easily passes the 6-foot passenger behind 6-foot driver test.

When testing the Quadrifoglio on the number eight, Walton noted: "It oscillates in between under- and oversteer, never really settling dvery own or remaining neutral. Understeer on the skidpad and oversteer (a ton) on the departure. Steering is sublime and extremely quick."

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The Stelvio"s figure-eight time of 24.9 seconds at 0.79 g puts it in firm of some crazy handling makers. In terms of g"s, it"s on par via the Honda Civic Type R and Nissan GT-R Premium. In regards to circuit time, it mirrors the 2016 Audi S6 4.0T and a Porsche Madeserve to GTS on summer tires.

Speaking of the Macan, it was intriguing to drive the Stelvio Quadrifoglio straight after a Porsche Mahave the right to GTS. Although they are in sepaprice universes in regards to power output, their loved one prices (my Macan tester rang in at 85 large) put the 2 in the exact same consideration set. The Madeserve to was bank-vault silent while cruising while the Alfa creaked. The Porsche engine purred while the Alfa growled. The Madeserve to suspension was subtle and also polished while the Stelvio was jouncy and also instant. But sooner or later while in the Alfa, I pulled up alongside an additional Madeserve to, and also the Porsche looked ordinary by comparison. Then I parked surrounding to another Madeserve to in a lot, and also the Alfa"s front countenance ssuggest oozed so a lot even more personality, more fun, even more excitement. So you gain that advantage.

Now that we have actually the raving out of the way, we have to deal with the issue of the Alfa being an Alfa. To be clear: There was nary a mechanical hiccup or electrical gremlin in the time of our loan duration.

That said, the Stelvio Quadrifoglio was an aural attack of body panel squeaks and plastic-on-plastic buzzes and rattles. Some exterior panel gaps were more prefer panel fissures. There is a room of the Palos Verdes peninsula, dubbed Portuguese Bend, that is in a perpetual slow-activity landslide. The undulations and upheavals in its cracked patchwork-related of asphalt are the identical of off-roading while on a paved road. It makes for a perfect test of manufacturing top quality in terms of exactly how eexceptionally piece of plastic, aluminum, and steel fits together—or doesn"t.

In this test, the Stelvio fails catastrophically. The driver"s seat squeaks like a trapped mouse. The center console rattles mercilessly. Plastic mountings buzz. Tright here were mysterious screeches from rearward body panels. I"ve been via this passage in Kia Rios that were quieter. Heck, my 5-year-old Volvo XC70 via 50K on the clock is quieter. If a Lexus manufacturing facility assembled an SUV through this sort of construct high quality, the plant manager would be fired on the spot. But hey, (insert clichéd however vibrant Italian saying here), it"s an Alfa Romeo, take a chance! No, seriously, take a opportunity, because it"s a great automobile dynamically and artistically, squeaks and also rattles aside. But maybe take a possibility on a lease, because these first-year builds have the right to be a bit dicey off the factory floor.

For a automobile so filled with personality, one wonders how it acclimates through semi-autonomous innovation. A word about the Stelvio"s adaptive cruise control—it functioned great. In adhering to the automobile ahead, the Alfa carried a more intimate distance than most competing systems, and as such, no one dared reduced me off. And the Stelvio"s reaction time to cars braking ahead was spot on to human comfort levels. And it was revvy as soon as pulling ameans from a complete stop—whereas many type of smart cruise devices are lethargic. For that, it earns a bravo. But that"s about it for semi-autonomous systems; the lane keeping aid was little even more than an audible bermp-bermp reminder to get back in between the stripes.

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Then there"s the sticker price equation. The Quadrifoglio carries a $40,000 jump from a base Stelvio, and virtually eextremely penny goes toward dynamic performance. From a luxury brand also, you"d suppose a little bit of upgrade on internal fitments. But the infotainment system is the very same. The stereo is just adequate; the treble is a wash of distortion, and also the bass is muddy. The visor mirror cover is a cheap plastic seemingly pulled from a Fiat 500—a tactile error. The gearchange knob feels yanked from a PlayStation controller. And the climate manage fan is loud for the amount of air it"s actually pushing out the vents. Tbelow requirements to be even more than just an incredible engine and also chassis upgrade to make the Quadrifoglio worth the added money. But if you do not care about that kind of point and also simply desire an SUV that goes prefer hell and also looks favor it, the Alfa is a good area to begin.

2018 Alfa Romeo Stelvio Q4 Quadrifoglio
BASE PRICE $81,390
VEHICLE LAYOUT Front-engine, AWD, 5-pass, 4-door SUV
ENGINE 2.9L/505-hp/443-lb-ft twin-turbo DOHC 24-valve V-6
TRANSMISSION 8-speed automatic
CURB WEIGHT (F/R DIST) 4,282 lb (53/47%)
WHEELBASE 111.0 in
LENGTH x WIDTH x HEIGHT 185.1 x 77.0 x 66.3 in
0-60 MPH 3.3 sec