Alfa Romeo Working On Seven-Seat, Mild-Hybrid SUV
Alfa Romeo will kick off its next product offensive with an SUV larger than the Stelvio (pictured) being prepared for launch about two years from now. The people-hauler, built on the Stelvio’s Giorgio platform (the same as the Giulia sedan), will be the first brand offering with an electrified drivetrain, and the largest vehicle Alfa Romeo has ever built. A report last year said the coming SUV would probably slot into the BMW X5 and Mercedes-Benz GLE segment, however, the XL Stelvio has been benchmarked against the Audi Q7 and Volvo XC90, and a seven-seater model is likely.
Alfa Romeo Chief Technical Officer Roberto Fedeli opened up to Auto Express, saying that a larger, heavier SUV could embody brand DNA with the help of “a 48-volt mild hybrid solution.” The near-instant get-up of an e-turbo would counteract weight gain expected to be around 440 pounds. Fedeli revealed Alfa Romeo’s testing a 2.0-liter, four-cylinder with an e-turbo on a simulator, and said they “can achieve around 350 to 400 bhp.” Right now, the standard Stelvio produces 280 horsepower from its turbocharged 2.0-liter.
A larger model that opened proceedings at 350 hp would create enough separation between the Stelvio and a rival like the 333-horsepower Audi Q7 with the 3.0-liter six-cylinder. Were there a Quadrifoglio version, we’d imagine it would want to outdo the 505-hp coming from the four-leaf Stelvio.
After the SUV launches, the next-generation Euro-market Giulietta bows. After that, perhaps a new 4C? This summer, Autoline Network reported that the 4C would die in 2020 due to lagging sales. Yet, according to Auto Express, Alfa Romeo execs are still deciding “whether to completely reinvent the Alfa 4C for its next generation with a new chassis architecture and engine.”
We know that a heavily tweaked 4C appears next year as a 2019 model, the revisions aimed at getting the coupe closer to what it should have been from the beginning, and Fedeli wants a halo car to pitch alongside Alfa Romeo’s Sauber F1 sponsorship. A brand new 4C would be a lot to ask, although it appears the door isn’t totally closed.