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Alfa crosses up its seductive design with Stelvio

All wheel drive is standard as are all-aluminum turbocharged engines

2018 Alfa Romeo Stelvio

The Alfa Romeo Stelvio has created a lot of buzz leading up to its introduction at the 2016 Los Angeles Auto Show last week, and now it’s starting to rake in the awards.

The mid-size crossover was named Best in Show by cars.com, becoming the latest Alfa Romeo model to be recognized for its looks, presence and performance.

“With its sexy curves and promising performance chops, the Stelvio easily took home Cars.com's (first ever) Best in Show award,” said Aaron Bragman, Cars.com Detroit Bureau Chief. “Alfa Romeo's new 2018 Stelvio SUV stunned at the 2016 L.A. Auto Show.”

Stelvio is the second vehicle from Alfa’s new Giorgio platform, following the Giulia sedan introduced in summer 2015. In line with the company’s la meccanica delle emozioni spirit (the mechanics of emotion), it delivers race-inspired performance, seductive design, state-of-the-art technology and an exhilarating driving experience. It just happens to do all that in a utility bodystyle, in contrast to the other sexy Italian Alfas though the years.

Named after the famed Stelvio Pass, the highest paved mountain pass in the Italian Alps and the second highest in all the Alps, the Stelvio comes with standard all wheel drive and all-aluminum turbocharged powertrains — either a 2.0-litre 4-cylinder or a 2.9 V-6.

Standard on the Stelvio and Stelvio Ti, the 2.0-litre “four” makes 280 hp (best in class among competitors like the Audi Q5 and BMW X3) and generates 306 lb-ft of torque, allowing it to go from zero to 100 km/h in about 5.5 seconds. The 2.9-litre biturbo V-6 in the Stelvio Quadrifoglio makes 505 hp (which blows the rest of the class away) and 443 lb-ft, and takes about 4 seconds to get to 100 km/h.

Handling enhancement is provided by an Alfa DNA driving mode selector (DNA stands for the Dynamic, Natural and Advanced modes, with a fourth mode — Race — added to the Quadrifoglio). The standard Q4 all wheel drive system delivers power to all four wheels and can shift up to 60% to the front.

For personalization, the Stelvio is available in 13 exterior colors and seven wheel choices (ranging in size from 18 to 21 inches) and too-many-to-count interior combinations of upholstery, colors and trim pieces.

There is no timeline announced for distribution of the 2018 Stelvio, but we’d expect it sometime in the fourth quarter of 2017. Prices and equipment lists will be released closer to launch.

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