2018 Alfa Romeo Stelvio video preview

Nevermind that Alfa Romeo’s new sedan just arrived, now we have an SUV to join the fray.

Say hello to the Alfa Romeo Stelvio. The first SUV from the automaker and one that’s named after one of the greatest roads in the world. This has huge expectations.

The Alfa Romeo Stelvio borrows the rear-drive platform from the Giulia sedan, as well as its powertrains. Up top, a fire-breathing 2.9-liter turbocharged V-6 that makes 505 horsepower in the Quadrifoglio makes its way into the SUV and delivers the same sub-4 second 0-60 time too.

MORE: Read hits, misses, and hold from the 2016 LA Auto Show

Too spicy? Less expensive models deliver 280 horsepower from a turbo-4. In all cases, an 8-speed automatic shifts power to standard all-wheel drive.

Much of the Stelvio is geared toward the performance end of the SUV spectrum, in line to compete with Jaguar, BMW and Mercedes-Benz. To that end, the Stelvio can be equipped with a mechanical limited-slip differential, torque vectoring, active suspension, and Alfa’s DNA system that includes a Race setting–because why not.

The Quadrifoglio also sports interior upgrades such as grippy leather and Alcantara seats, leather-wrapped dash, and carbon fiber accents.

The Stelvio’s running has gone on a diet, according to Alfa Romeo, including aluminum front and rear frames, suspension parts, and doors and fenders that help it manage a 50/50 weight distribution, but Alfa has stopped short of telling us the overall weight.

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The SUV is slated to go on sale next year in the States with the high-powered Quadrifoglio joined by the Stelvio Ti and base Stelvio models. We’re still waiting on a price for the new SUV, but we already know that it’ll have excessive “passion” and “spirit” and “emotion” and a long list of unpronounceable Italian words to go along with its initial price. Sprezzatura! Whatever that is.

Judging by other SUVs in the segment, the Alfa Romeo Stelvio could be the buoy that helps the fledgling brand in America. Provided it’s not too late to the party.

That’s it for now but at any time you’ll be able to access the latest information from the 2016 L.A. auto show via our dedicated hub.

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