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Discussion Starter #1
Me and the wife are looking at the 2019 Alfa Romeo Stelvio (wife's idea) as a third vehicle added to the stable.
Currently, we own an M235i and a Camaro, so looking for a grocery getter that is not a Honda, Toyota or Nissan if you catch my drift.
We went out and test drive one today.
What we liked:
- handling - it drives like a car and not an SUV
- styling - with the sexiest brand name on the block the exterior styling is second to none IMHO.
What we were not thrilled about:
- acceleration - a 4-banger even though powerful enough exhibits turbo lag as no other recent 4-cyl turbo cars I've driven - numerous BMW's, 2019 Acura RDX, even a Mazda CX-5 with a 250 HP turbocharged 2.5l is less laggy.
- visibility - the rear window is of no use, the passenger side front of the car is practically an enormous blind spot, so the things like lane assist, and blind spot detector is a must.
- technology - a really low quality rear back up camera, a badly placed 8.8" display, no option for an HUD (Mazda has it, there is no excuse), no 360° view cameras (nice to have bit not a deal breaker).
However, the discounted pricing offered nearly $7.5K off the MSRP is a low hanging fruit.
We are looking to lease since we are not sure about the long term reliability, and the lease offer we got is nothing spectacular to write home about - with a little over $3k down it came up to $475 and some change for 10K miles/year 36 month lease on a Stelvio AWD Ti in Verde Visconti with yellow calipers (don't really need that), Bluetooth with Nav, and a compact spare to boot.
Yes, the Quad is more powerful and all that, and it take me 2 minutes faster to get my groceries, so does the Macan Turbo, or X3M.
 

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Not sure if you're asking for opinions or what, but IMO wouldn't make a good grocery getter.

The lag off the line translates to better acceleration above 60 but that's is worthless on grocery runs. And yes, the backup camera is the worst in the industry...and it is not designed well for parking lot maneuvers.

Although I will say with the outside mirrors placed properly I think the visibility is as good as most sports cars...which is what it is closest to...just on stilts.

Keeping it in D or getting a Go pedal will get rid of the lag off the line also, but honestly...being stuck on surface streets below 70 for most of its life is not where the vehicle will be enjoyed most.

Audi, BMW, Mazda, Nissan, Volvo....will all be more enjoyable in that role.

If digital and computerized technology is even a top 5 priority, Alfa is not going to make you happy. However if the trade off of saving hundred of lbs, which is how they get that car-like drive, is a top 5 - you will like Alfa.

Personally I would get a Volvo, or maybe even a Jag if I were using it primarily as something to feel nice in while running errands. not being snide or anything else...Jag's look great and are nice to cruise in, Volvo's too.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
The F-Pace is in our cross hairs.
Volvo is not so much though.
I'm surprised the offering from Alfa Romeo in terms of available tech is lackluster given that they are after Audi, BMW, and MB owners - Alfa Romeo offers a $1K incentive just on the fact that I'm driving a BMW. Acura does the same, and their offering is on par in that regard at least.
I didn't come here to bash I just want to understand who is the target audience for Alfa Romeo.
I do like the brand, but charging a premium on a brand alone is not something I am thrilled about. And I have the same critique for the BMW as well. But at least they have started to realize the price should be reflective of the luxury offered not just overcharging for the "ultimate driving experience" alone.
 

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I have a quad, and find the rear camera pretty darn good. Can use it to line up the trailer hitch pretty much perfect. Between that and three mirrors and shoulder check ....
I think the bigger screen is optional on the 4cyl models.
I've had two base loaners - if you didnt try one with paddle shift you should. Or go manual mode. Driven like that I didnt find lag to be an issue. The 4cyl is plenty quick.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I have a quad, and find the rear camera pretty darn good. Can use it to line up the trailer hitch pretty much perfect. Between that and three mirrors and shoulder check ....
I think the bigger screen is optional on the 4cyl models.
I've had two base loaners - if you didnt try one with paddle shift you should. Or go manual mode. Driven like that I didnt find lag to be an issue. The 4cyl is plenty quick.
We tried a base Lusso with every option checked. Not sure if the sports seats and paddles can be ordered on a base Stelvio.
So far the wife is liking it more than I do - happy wife happy life - it looks like we might pull a trigger on this one. I'll have my bimmer for fun summer driving, she got her Camaro for the same, and the Alfa's going to be an everyday car.
 

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He's right.

Most cars you pay for thousands of hours of software engineering, along with a pretty solid performing chassis.

Alfa Romeo you pay for thousands of hours of chassis engineering, along with pretty solid software.

They are almost polar opposites..other than both are marketed as being '"driver's vehicles" and have a similar price tag.

Alfa's Q4 makes Audi's Quatto look like slow, old tech...which it is....even the top Quattro system takes over twice as long to activate and is not predictive in the same way. Because Alfa spent their money on the drivetrain.

Audi infotainment software works smoother and has more personalization options. It can make being in the car entertaining even if driving it isn't...because Audi spends that money on software development.

Alfa Romeo' infotainment does it's job, but really is just the base code for both Audi and BMW so it is very simple. If driving isn't enjoyable...the Alfa doesn't care...driving is always enjoyable it won't distract from that.

When I bought my Porsche waaay back in the late 2k's....push button start wasn't an option. It was on competitors, but not Porsche. I asked why .The salesman told me it didn't make the car faster or drive better, but it did add weight (antennas, transmitters, a bigger battery, etc) which made the car slower and not handle as well, so Porsche didn't offer it. I loved that car...almost as much as the Stelvio. Now Porsche has all the tech you want....and they are heavy, /with filtered responses and communication...reminds me of driving a VW or Audi more than a Porsche....read a Car and Driver article about how..now...Porsche is really the last of the true VW DNA and the 4 doors and SUVs are really the ultimate VW's...agree with that 100%.

What was the classic Porsche buyer, in many ways is the Alfa buyer now.

Would you rather have less tech...along with a faster, lighter, better handling and more communicative vehicle that prioritizes driving over everything? That your kid can't watch TV in the back doesn't matter cause that kid is constantly laughing everytime you go around a corner...is a plus to you...(I was that kid...thanks to all the cool parents out there)

Time was you went out and got a Porsche...generally without even looking at anything else, because nothing was like a Porsche...now, nothing is like an Alfa.

Do you think engineering a chassis is more important than engineering software?

You want an Alfa.

You understand finessing the driving experience from remaining composed at speeds well into triple digits, to mid-corner bumps and dips, then off-camber turns and add in crawling through deep sand, mud, snow, or more is actually harder and more expensive than writing computer code (more labor, more trial and error, the test tracks cost millions to maintain same with machines for testing...plus the wrecks cost additional millions in money and labor, possibly even causing physical injuries to the driver and crew...whereas the expensive part of software is making sure the programmers have plenty of Cheetos and the electricity)...so to you the premium charged actually makes more sense for an Alfa than other cars...?

To you charging a premium for unproven software (as evidenced by the unending sea of software updates and revisions), that also locks you into a proprietary repair system and could make it so the car is undrivable after the manufacturer decides to stop supporting that software...essentially making your $50,000+ car an old computer to get recycled...makes no sense at all...

You want an Alfa.

Want a bunch of tech, don't care how heavy the car is, and think that fun in a car is showing your friends all the cool stuff...you don't want to explain why your car is sweet...you just want people to "know it already"...

You want anything else.

Alfa owners impress their friends by doing things in their car that are borderline scary...no one is looking at the infotainment and most of them can't remember if the stereo was on.

Or they don't impress their friends..because they are confident enough to not have to prove anything. They know what they know and to them...they know their car is better. Not perfect, could improve...but still better than competitors.

Alfa is going after its competitors but they don't want EVERBODY who drives those brands, they want the people who love driving and have been stuck in cars sold as being for drivers..but really...they aren't....

People like that are driving every brand right now...but you might not be one. You might be too..that is for you to decide, and whatever it is, congratulations.

Like I said though...if it really is going to do nothing more than get groceries and run errands...may not be the right vehicle...even if you love driving.

Or it might.

I don't think it is a coincidence most of the best driving cars..Porsche Boxster, Mazda Miata, etc...are considered "Chick" cars....my Dad is the tech/shop manager..super car man...my Mom is the one who had taste though.... Were it up to Dad we would have only driven 80's Toyota cars and Ford/GM trucks..cause the parts were cheap and they can be driven into the ground.

IMO women who care about cars are generally smart, refined drivers who like sweet cars, and can definitely appreciate the finer aspects of driving, and are probably the exact drivers Alfa is looking for...if that is your Wife, congrats!
 

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The F-Pace is in our cross hairs.
Volvo is not so much though.
I'm surprised the offering from Alfa Romeo in terms of available tech is lackluster given that they are after Audi, BMW, and MB owners - Alfa Romeo offers a $1K incentive just on the fact that I'm driving a BMW. Acura does the same, and their offering is on par in that regard at least.
I didn't come here to bash I just want to understand who is the target audience for Alfa Romeo.
I do like the brand, but charging a premium on a brand alone is not something I am thrilled about. And I have the same critique for the BMW as well. But at least they have started to realize the price should be reflective of the luxury offered not just overcharging for the "ultimate driving experience" alone.
Very simply...
If you want a vehicle that drives and handles like a sports car, buy the Alfa.
If you want a vehicle just for the technology, buy anything else.
 

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Do you think engineering a chassis is more important than engineering software?

You want an Alfa.

You understand finessing the driving experience from remaining composed at speeds well into triple digits, to mid-corner bumps and dips, then off-camber turns and add in crawling through deep sand, mud, snow, or more is actually harder and more expensive than writing computer code (more labor, more trial and error, the test tracks cost millions to maintain same with machines for testing...plus the wrecks cost additional millions in money and labor, possibly even causing physical injuries to the driver and crew...whereas the expensive part of software is making sure the programmers have plenty of Cheetos and the electricity)...so to you the premium charged actually makes more sense for an Alfa than other cars...?

To you charging a premium for unproven software (as evidenced by the unending sea of software updates and revisions), that also locks you into a proprietary repair system and could make it so the car is undrivable after the manufacturer decides to stop supporting that software...essentially making your $50,000+ car an old computer to get recycled...makes no sense at all...

You want an Alfa.

Want a bunch of tech, don't care how heavy the car is, and think that fun in a car is showing your friends all the cool stuff...you don't want to explain why your car is sweet...you just want people to "know it already"...

You want anything else.

Alfa owners impress their friends by doing things in their car that are borderline scary...no one is looking at the infotainment and most of them can't remember if the stereo was on.
Man, it's funny how spot on this response was. I bought a Stelvio today after a few weeks of worrying about if I was making the right choice
and wondering if the knocks against the Alfa would come back to haunt me. Most reviews said the infotainment system is terrible and potentially a deal breaker. For me, though, if I'm driving, I don't want to be futzing with some dumb computer and having to deal with more systems and system failure system shutdown system backup system loading system update system support system limp mode system rollback system notification system error system safe mode system restart system not responding system install system not found system waiting system config
system fix dys system reboot system crash system warning system frozen system glitch system no data system crying system takeover system systems system... I wanted a car that's exciting to drive; I can text my idiot friends and find maps and coffee shops with my phone just fine.

Also, the day after I test drove the Stelvio, I woke up at 4:50 in the morning and couldn't sleep because I was so excited at the possibility of owning such a fun car. That was when I made up my mind to buy it. Then, after I bought it and was driving home, I had music on and I actually turned it off because I wanted to experience the car more, which is super weird because I'm a musician and ALWAYS have music on no matter what I'm doing. Now, I have been sitting at my desk antsy because I can't wait to drive it. Normally, I just want to get home and ride my bike or something but now I'm thinking about what errands I could possibly run just so I can drive it somewhere. Sucks that its rush hour for like half of the day here in Chicago.
 

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However, the discounted pricing offered nearly $7.5K off the MSRP is a low hanging fruit.
We are looking to lease since we are not sure about the long term reliability, and the lease offer we got is nothing spectacular to write home about - with a little over $3k down it came up to $475 and some change for 10K miles/year 36 month lease on a Stelvio AWD Ti in Verde Visconti with yellow calipers (don't really need that), Bluetooth with Nav, and a compact spare to boot..
Shop around if you have the choice. I had the exact car I wanted in my focus, but didn't pull the trigger quick enough. It was used, I buy used and hate paying depreciation for a brand new car when you can often get very low mileage demo/loaner cars for quite a savings. The problem is that one tech (CarPlay) is a must for me and the 2018's are hit and miss with CarPlay right now. So the two local dealers to me have been trying to convince to get a new one. Yes options and such make a difference, but 9-10k off has been the norm. Lease deals have been similar. (actually 4 dealers near me, but 2 of the dealers are shuttered due to a bad ownership group and noone knows what will happen as the cars sit there on the lots).
 

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I purchased a Stilvio Ti Sport (4 cylinder) I owned 2 other Alfa's, one in the 50's and one in the 60's. Bought Alfa's for the way they handle and drive. Could care less about ApplePlay and that kind of stuff, it does not make the car performance any better, my fist to Alfa's had only a radio. Alfa has no excuse for the very cheap backup camera and navigation system thought, they should fire the person that made those vendor choices.
 

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I purchased a Stilvio Ti Sport (4 cylinder) I owned 2 other Alfa's, one in the 50's and one in the 60's. Bought Alfa's for the way they handle and drive. Could care less about ApplePlay and that kind of stuff, it does not make the car performance any better, my fist to Alfa's had only a radio. Alfa has no excuse for the very cheap backup camera and navigation system thought, they should fire the person that made those vendor choices.
I picture an ancient Italian guy in the corner of the factory. This guy was a baby sweeping floors when Enzo was at Alfa.

He over hears new management talking about a backup camera...and he throws a bottle of wine against the floor by the execs and screams....

"NO!! An Alfa Romeo is not for backing up! You drive forward faster!!!!! Always forward!!!! Backup is for the germans!!!!" Then he spit on the floor.

So they had to wait till he took a nap, then just threw in the first backup camera they could find...had to hide the software development from him.....

Only reason I can think of for the backup camera...the first backup camera ever put in a car was better than this one I think....
 

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Then, after I bought it and was driving home, I had music on and I actually turned it off because I wanted to experience the car more, which is super weird because I'm a musician and ALWAYS have music on no matter what I'm doing.
I am a musician and I do the exact same thing!!
 

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However, the discounted pricing offered nearly $7.5K off the MSRP is a low hanging fruit.
We are looking to lease since we are not sure about the long term reliability, and the lease offer we got is nothing spectacular to write home about - with a little over $3k down it came up to $475 and some change for 10K miles/year 36 month lease on a Stelvio AWD Ti in Verde Visconti with yellow calipers (don't really need that), Bluetooth with Nav, and a compact spare to boot.
I ended up letting my accountant and dealer talk me in to a new TI lease. I don't have the MF and residual handy, but basic terms are 52k base price with some other add ons, 10k off. TTL down and a little more (2000 to also cover powder coating my wheels). 20k miles per year at 600/month. Drop to 10k miles and I was at ~460. Funny part is, a base sport with a lower MSRP ended up being slightly more expensive even though it was 5 or 6k less.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
A quick update: we have made an offer on a Lusso and waiting for the dealership to confirm they could get us the car. Hopefully, we'll be taking it home next week.
 
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