It’s been a long time coming but it’s now finally here (almost!). Alfa Romeo of Ottawa should be officially opening its doors in the next few days. If you happen to be driving by the corner of St-Laurent and Montreal road, you will see a huge stock of brand new Alfas, both Giulias and Stelvios with a few 4Cs on the way.
But, ahead of the official opening, the folks at Alfa Romeo of Ottawa invited us this past Sunday to test drive the all-new Stelvio. What a car! I won’t go into any great details about the test drive itself. You can find a great number of articles on the web written by professionals.
The Stelvio made available for test drives was the Sport trim. Black with a beautiful red interior. Much like the new Giulia, the dashboard is reminiscent of classic Alfas with the round air vents. Seats were very comfortable with adjustable bolsters. The gigantic sunroof allowed plenty of natural lighting in the car but could also be “dimmed” by sliding a screen.
Nice smooth acceleration with precise handling in Natural mode. After a few minutes on the highway, Irene, our Alfa specialist switched the car to Dynamic mode. The change was instantaneous. The steering became even more precise and the car just stiffened up as if to say “OK, I’m ready to have some fun!”. We then took the car on some loose gravel to test out the stability of the all-wheel drive. The car stayed rock steady as we drove from the pavement to loose gravel and back on pavement again.
I then let one of our club members get behind the wheel. Although a very tall man, I still had plenty of leg room in the back seat.
As the test drives were taking place, Alfa Romeo of Ottawa head mechanic, Pierre held a tech session on a vintage Spider with a suspected worn out engine. A compression test followed by a leak down showed that the bottom end of the engine was quite healthy but likely required a head refresh to cure the oil consumption. Everyone present was very happy to hear that he will also service our vintage Alfas.
A great day was had by all and a couple of new Alfas may make their way to ARCO in the coming weeks.
A very special thanks to Manuel, John, Irene and Pierre for taking a day from the long weekend to host this event.