3 Luxe Utility Vehicles Worth Every Penny

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ALFA ROMEO STELVIO
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ALFA ROMEO STELVIO

Can an SUV have soul? Such is the question posed by the first people hauler from Alfa Romeo — yeah, the same folks who won the first Formula One championship. While an SUV might seem anathema to a motorsport heritage brand, remember that the Cayman basically saved Porsche. Luckily, Alfa’s five-seat Stelvio has good genes: The second vehicle in the brand’s comeback shares its underpinnings with the rousing Giulia sedan. And like that car, among a same-same group of vehicles, the Stelvio feels livelier. Part of that is because of its lighter weight, the result of using components like a carbon-fiber drive shaft and magnesium and aluminum elsewhere. Like the SQ5 and XC60, its all-wheel-drive setup favors the rear wheels. But the Stelvio almost begs you to drive it with spirit — from big, column-mounted paddle shifters to a “dynamic” drive mode that really is just that. The cabin doesn’t quite match the hushed sophistication of the Audi or Volvo — you can see the Fiat Chrysler shadow in places like the rubbery dash. But after our test drive in the sweeping Tennessee foothills, we didn’t want to leave it. Even more surprising? Topping out near $54,000, with all the options, the Stelvio is kind of a deal. alfaromeousa.com

ENGINE: 2-LITER TURBOCHARGED 4 

HORSEPOWER: 280 

MSRP FROM: $42,990

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