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Alfa Romeo reveals finished Stelvio Quadrifoglio. Image by Alfa Romeo.

Alfa Romeo reveals finished Stelvio Quadrifoglio
Super SUV gets from 510hp/600Nm biturbo V6 and is capable of 176mph.
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2017-12-05: First drive: Alfa Romeo Stelvio Quadrifoglio

What's all this about?

Following on from its record-breaking lap time (for an SUV) at the Nurburgring Nordschleife just a month or so ago, the wraps have come off the Alfa Romeo Stelvio Quadrifoglio. There aren't many surprises here, if we're honest, but when the resulting machine is a 510hp monster that can rip off 0-62mph in 3.8 seconds, we're not really complaining too much.

You what?! That's faster than the Giulia Quadrifoglio?!

It is indeed, mainly thanks to its use of Alfa's Q4 all-wheel drive system, which blesses it with mammoth off-the-line traction to offset its additional bulk (the Stelvio Quadrifoglio is 1,830kg) and its less-capable aerodynamics. Furthermore, the Stelvio QF will run on to 176mph, which - while not quite the 191mph of the Giulia Quadrifoglio from which it borrows its drivetrain - is still claimed to be more than any of its comparable SUV rivals.

You mentioned a 'Ring lap record - what was that?

The Stelvio Quadrifoglio is the lap record-holder for production SUVs at the Nurburgring Nordschleife, slamming in a 7minute 51.7-second circuit of the 12.9-mile track and shaving eight seconds from the previous benchmark, set by the deranged Range Rover Sport SVR. The Stelvio achieved this feat in September. And now we know about the hardware underpinning the QF that allowed it to do such a thing.

So can you tell me all about it?

Sure thing. Like the Giulia QF, the Stelvio employs a carbon fibre propshaft and aluminium in the engine, suspension, brakes, doors, wheel arches and the bonnet, with all of its mass split 50:50 across the two axles. Ported over from the Giulia is the 2.9-litre, twin-turbo V6 delivering that fulsome 510hp at 6,500rpm and also 600Nm from 2,500rpm through to 5,000rpm. The petrol engine is mated to an eight-speed automatic transmission, which is in turn connected to the Q4 AWD. This can split torque up to 50:50 front-to-rear (it's 100 per cent rear-biased in normal driving, which is great) and across the back axle thanks to Active Torque Vectoring.
Alfa's Chassis Domain Control with drive modes is included, as is the Integrated Brake System (which is stability control combined with the servo brake) and steering that's set up at in incredibly direct 12:1. Carbon-ceramic brake discs will be an option, while the V6 can also decouple the gearbox and even shut down some of its cylinders to save fuel. Alfa claims best-in-class figures of 279hp-per-tonne for power-to-weight and 176hp-per-litre for specific output, too. The Stelvio Quadrifoglio is therefore a serious bit of hardware, we're sure you'll agree.

And what about the looks and interior?

Handsome on the outside, Alfa cites 'necessary beauty' and says the look of the Stelvio follows the aerodynamic functions required to make it drive properly. You'll easily spot obvious Quadrifoglio signifiers like the vented bonnet, large alloys on low-profile tyres, quad exhausts, black glasshouse detailing and an aggressive lower bodykit, as well as the white triangle 'cloverleaf' motifs on the front wings. Inside, the simply gorgeous aluminium paddle shifts are preserved, while there's lots of carbon fibre, Alcantara and leather - as well as the 8.8-inch Alfa Connect infotainment system with 3D navigation, incorporating Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity.

Come on, then - how much is all this going to cost?

Good question. The Alfa Romeo Stelvio Quadrifoglio will arrive in the UK in summer 2018, with prices and specifications being announced closer to that date. But as the top Stelvio currently starts at £43,990 and the Giulia QF is beyond £61,500, you can probably reckon on the Stelvio QF kicking off at around £65,000.

Matt Robinson - 1 Nov 2017

2018 Alfa Romeo Stelvio Quadrifoglio. Image by Alfa Romeo.       - Alfa Romeo road tests
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