Review: Alfa Romeo Stelvio Quadrifoglio (2020)
There are a few automotive marques that can combine history and passion, mesh it meticulously with technology and performance, and have it all come to life in perfect harmony.
But Alfa Romeo is one of them.
It all started at the beginning of the 20th century with the now almost forgotten name, Società Anonima Italiana Darracq, created by a Frenchman no less. But it was an Italian partner that changed the company into what it would be known from henceforth, A.L.F.A. ([Società] Anonima Lombarda Fabbrica Automobili." Otherwise known as the Lombardy Automobile Factory.
Over the years, the company has changed hands a number of times – and over the course of history has even produced aeroplane engines.
Today it is a shining star in the vast Fiat Chrysler Automobiles empire, producing by far the most exciting cars of its history. This is the natural evolution of its magnificent past that has given the automotive industry such icons as the Alfa Romeo 2000 Sportiva 1954, Alfa Romeo 8C 2900 Mille Miglia 1938, Alfa Romeo Duetto Spider 1966 and our personal favourite, Alfa Romeo Disco Volante 1952.
As a matter of fact, the brand started making its mark in automotive as early as the 1911 Targa Florio and has ever since enjoyed Grand Prix racing, Formula One and rally victories over its history. It is undoubtedly the only carmaker that can boast having Enzo Ferrari as an employee.
Our subject in question is the all-new Alfa Romeo Stelvio Quadrifoglio 2020. Before divulging into the car, it may be worth to mention the Quadrifoglio (four-leaf clover) was once upon a time exclusively reserved as the unmistakable symbol of Alfa’s racing team, nowadays it is the stamp of Alfa’s performance line.
The 2020 Stelvio Quadrifoglio has brilliantly resisted the silent electric route most luxury S.U.V.’s have chosen; its 510-hp BiTurbo V-6 makes the petrol engine sound like one of Rossini’s symphonies. To celebrate this magnificent vehicle, we took it on a cultural journey to the U.A.E.’s capital.
The Louvre Abu Dhabi is the obvious choice, giving us just over an hour’s drive to really get stuck in and evaluate the strengths and, if any, weaknesses this vehicle has.
On the open road, it is quiet in the cabin, the drive is poised and steady, the modern driver aids make driving it effortless, and the vastly efficient engine ensures overtaking is a doodle. At the same time, fuel economy will satisfy any eco-warrior.
The steering wheel is somewhat delicate which brings out the racing pedigree, so are the breaks, it takes some time to get used to, but an hour into driving it and it’s no chore anymore.
The optional Sparco racing seats may seem different at first, but within minutes they become a spot you don’t want to leave. Automated emergency braking with forward-collision warning has been newly introduced as standard, which is the pinnacle of technology and safety.
The futuristically designed Louvre Abu Dhabi is entered through the fittingly named Jacques Chirac Street. The museum portrays what Alfa Romeo and the brand stands for, contemporary and sleek on the outside but a whole lot of history and soul on the inside.
Being the younger sister of its original in Paris, while not as big but still about 25,000 square metres and holds a vast collection of art and artefacts from prehistory to the 21st century within the 8,000 square metre exhibition halls, making it the largest museum in the G.C.C.
What sets this one apart from Paris is the impressive collection of U.A.E. related galleries. Visiting will take the better part of half a day, and if you want to get stuck in some adventure and catch a glimpse of this building from the sea, then kayaks are available to rent.
All in all, it’s a great ride, one of the fastest in its category and the fact that there aren’t as many of these on the road as their German competitors give the 2020 Stelvio Quadrifoglio an exclusive feel.
The question we have, will the Italian Marque follow suit to the electric revolution or maintain producing symphonies?
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