2019 Alfa Romeo Stelvio Ti Sport essentials: More fun without the kids

Our Opinion: The Stelvio, with either powertrain, is about as fun as a crossover can get. This 280-hp four never had me wanting more power and the eight-speed auto is one of the few torque converter transmissions that is still fun to shift with the paddles. On most cars that left paddle for downshift is more of a suggestion than an order. The two-liter also sounds better than most with a few crackles here and there and a general wooshy growl.
Where this Stelvio really shines — and the Giulia and the 4C for that matter — is the steering. It’s light, and easy, but unbelievably quick. Most people would probably say too quick. Getting out of our parking lot normally takes a 270-degree crank of the wheel, in the Alfa it’s about a 90.
This crossover has a good mix of ride and handling. It borders on too stiff, especially in the stiffest modes, but it’s sharp when changing direction with almost no lean or body roll. There’s only a little dive on braking as well. Bigger bumps sometimes bang in the Stelvio’s cabin, but only the above average, super jagged, should-have-been-fixed-years-ago potholes.