Revealed: Alfa Romeo Tonale hybrid crossover is here to take on Audi Q3, Volvo XC40

Striking the right Tonale?

ALFA ROMEO has unveiled the Tonale, its long-awaited compact crossover, with a design inspired by classic Alfas but a modern line-up of diesel, hybrid and plug-in hybrid power choices that open “a new era of electrification” for the Italian brand.

Head-on, its styling influences are easily recognisable with the shield-shaped grille and “Trilobo” headlights, harking back to models such as the Alfa 159, Brera and SZ Zagato.

In profile, the new model features classic five-holed Teledial wheels — available from 17in to 20in in diameter — while the beltline is inspired by the Giulia GT from the 1960s.

2022 Alf Romeo Tonale crossover

Interior specifications

Aluminium, leather, Alcantara and neoprene clad the interior, reflecting, the company says, “the personality of a young, metropolitan, dynamic customer.”

Some of the elements making the cabin that bit more pleasant and comfortable include dual-zone air conditioning, heated and ventilated (cooled) front seats, a 14-speaker Harman Kardon sound system and Amazon Alexa voice recognition.

Facing the driver is a configurable double-cowled digital instrument panel incorporating a 12.3in screen and large aluminium gear shifters sitting behind the sports steering wheel.

As far as the infotainment system goes, a 10.25in touchscreen crowns the centre of the dashboard, though this can be operated using a rotary controller mounted on the central tunnel as well as via the screen itself.

The new model features a high level of driver assistance and safety technology across the range, from par-for-the-course items such as automatic traffic sign recognition and automated emergency braking, right up to adaptive cruise control and lane centring, giving the car a modicum of Level 2 self-driving capability. Semi-automatic parking makes getting in and out of tight spaces that bit easier too, especially when combined with the 360-degree view camera.

Engine range

Opening the Tonale line-up is a hybrid model that pairs a 1.5-litre turbocharged petrol engine with a 15kW electric motor and a seven-speed automatic transmission to deliver 128bhp. The system allows for a small distance of all-electric driving such as on start-up or when in stop-start traffic. It is also available in a more powerful turbocharged 158bhp iteration.

Further up the range and minus any electric assistance is a version powered by a 128bhp 1.6-litre four-cylinder diesel engine driving the front wheels through a six-speed automatic gearbox.

At the top of the Tonale tree is the all-wheel-drive 271bhp Q4 plug-in hybrid, which uses the same hybrid system as the Jeep Renegade 4xe. Using a 1.3-litre turbocharged petrol engine and power from a 15.5kWh battery, the Tonale Q4 can not only manage the 0-62mph sprint in a brisk 6.2 seconds but also achieve around 37 miles of mixed electric-only driving. Using a 7.4kW home wallbox, a full battery charge can be completed in 2.5 hours.

Alfa is keen to point out that while the Tonale might be a compact crossover, it retains the company’s sporting character.

According to the company, there is “perfect” weight distribution between front and rear axles; the most direct steering in its segment; impressive stopping power courtesy of Brembo brake calipers and ventilated discs; steering tuned for greater feel than the average crossover; and suspension damping developed alongside performance shock absorber specialist Koni.

Versions, prices and on sale date

The Tonale introduces a new trim structure for Alfa Romeo, too, with Super and Ti being the two levels available. Base model Supers can be spiced up with the Sprint pack, while Ti, the sportier of the two trims, can be amplified by the Veloce pack “to reach the peak in terms of performance and sportiness”.

In recent Alfa nomenclature, Veloce has denoted a higher performance model than standard, though not as powerful or aggressive as the Quadrifoglio range-toppers.

Pricing for the Tonale has yet to be announced but considering the £42,123 starting price of the bigger Stelvio, expect the compact crossover to fly well below that. Alfa is taking orders now with deliveries expected from this summer.

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