The interior layout, fit and finish
Driving position and dashboard
So far, we’ve only tried Stelvios with electrically adjustable seats. They prove easy to adjust for the needs of both tall and short drivers, and have adjustable lumbar support. The steering wheel has plenty of adjustment for rake but fairly limited reach adjustment, so not everyone will find a perfect driving position. The gear selector falls easily to hand, although the aluminium paddles behind the steering wheel are particularly large to make up for the fact that they don’t rotate with the steering wheel. This means you have to reach further back than is natural to find the indicator or wiper stalks.
Visibility, parking sensors and cameras
While the view over the heavily sculpted bonnet is an attractive one, we did find the windscreen pillars to be quite thick. This can cause issues when pulling out of junctions. Likewise, the thick rear pillars and narrow rear window can make reversing tricky. Thankfully a rear-parking camera is standard on all trims.
Sat nav and infotainment
Every Stelvio gets an 8.8in colour infotainment screen that’s controlled by a rotary dial mounted between the front seats. Using this physical controller is much simpler – not to mention safer – than taking your eyes off the road to prod a touchscreen, as you will in most rivals.
The 2019 facelift saw the system get a full redesign, and the finished product is smart; the home screen features widget-style information and the menus are much simpler to navigate than the set-ups provided by BMW or Mercedes. However, it’s still not swish enough to pull you away from plugging in your smartphone to use Apple CarPlay or Android Auto (included as standard.)
All cars now also get a 7.0in TFT screen that’s mounted between the analogue instrument dials. This can be configured to display information such as sat-nav instructions or driving information. There’s also plenty of connected services available, such as an app that, among features, allows you to unlock the car remotely or locate it in a car park. The app can even be operated through a smart speaker at home, via services such as Amazon’s Alexa or Google Home.
Interior finish has always been a bit of a sticking point with Alfa. Luckily, the 2019 facelift saw a fully overhauled interior that features swathes of soft-touch surfaces, as well as the option of specifying real-wood inserts for prominent locations, such as around the leather-clad gear selector. The rotary infotainment controller, which used to feel a little loose, now has a solid click to it, as do all the buttons and dials. There’s even an Italian flag motif at the base of the gear shifter to remind you of Alfa Romeo’s homeland’s reputation for luxurious craftsmanship.