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(Post Link) post #1 of 154 Old 10-08-18 Thread Starter
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Quadrifoglio (QF)

I had discarded Stelvio as a replacement for my X4 35i - until I stumbled over the QF. Not in person -they are all sold out due to environmental taxes 5 folded as of Aug.1 in Sweden.

The QF is like a dream come true - it has the looks and performance/attributes, that I could just dream about - without testdrive - just reading automotive tests.

Unfortunately it is also slightly above my budget - I have to await pre-owned vehicles to come to the market.

To my mind it is so heavily modified/improved, that it is a different vehicle compared to "STD" Stelvio, and hence should have its own thread.

I have tried to suggest this to the site, but I have a problem to get through with the proposal.
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Apart from the cosmetic differences & the engine is the QF really that different from the other trim levels. The number of "unique" problems you will get is unlikely to be that many and I'm sure reading the problems of us lesser mortals might actually be of benefit.


None of the other model lounges split out trim levels I don't see we this one should be different.
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(Post Link) post #3 of 154 Old 11-08-18 Thread Starter
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Thanks for comment!

OK - I buy your arguments - no unique thread, but:
-yes, QF is a different animal! Apart from the engine and the body modifications (not only cosmetic), you have:
-vector supported handling (clutches at rear axles)
-three way adjustable dampers
-three way setting on gearbox. Same ZF as my X4, but strengthened and with a RACE mode=kick in gears.
-two - or three -way exhaust flaps for additional joy of driving
-unique setting of engine in RACE mode for enhanced sound
-unique 20" wheels: Alfa style.
-Brembo brakes - 6 pot at front.

I suggest you read some of the testdrives recently performed - also by UK editors - who puts QF ahead of Macan, but, of course, not ahead of JLR products.

As said above, I had discarded Stelvio as replacement of my X4, due to some minor things being less appealing, but QF rectifies them all.

I forgot: to my mind we are not talking about a trim level, but a heavily modified vehicle.

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(Post Link) post #4 of 154 Old 11-08-18 Thread Starter
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Another thought: SAAB 900 was regarded as a sedate vehicle, until we introduced: the Turbo, the Rucksack (rear spoiler) and AERO wheels. Then it took off as a performance vehicle - especially in the US.

Luckily, we also made some upgrades to already good chassis, so we had a good package - apart from the gearbox
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(Post Link) post #5 of 154 Old 17-08-18 Thread Starter
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I have been reading "all" tests/evaluations, I could find, and they have a common note: all smiles- and:"this is not the typical weird italian car - but almost normal - apart from the outstanding engine/chassis/sound.

I have not before read this kind of remarks from "all" testers- not even JLR products from UK testers.

"My" dealer right now has no DEMO, but wiil in about two months time. I will come back with my two cents worth of input.
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(Post Link) post #6 of 154 Old 18-08-18 Thread Starter
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Saturday and rain coming in from southwest….. After having done my "homework", I re-read some of the tests.

One "tester"/journalist - major Magazine - 19000 "clicks" - complained about slight understeer going through those- fairly - sharp bends at the Arabic version of Stelvio Pass. Commented of QF being good - but not as "nice" as Macan.


Independent "Tarzan" - 90000 "clicks" -noted that the vehicle - coming out of bends - had a slight oversteer - which he liked. Better than Macan.

Obviously there is one good - and one - not - so - very - good driver.
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Originally Posted by Tjalle View Post
Saturday and rain coming in from southwest….. After having done my "homework", I re-read some of the tests.

One "tester"/journalist - major Magazine - 19000 "clicks" - complained about slight understeer going through those- fairly - sharp bends at the Arabic version of Stelvio Pass. Commented of QF being good - but not as "nice" as Macan.


Independent "Tarzan" - 90000 "clicks" -noted that the vehicle - coming out of bends - had a slight oversteer - which he liked. Better than Macan.

Obviously there is one good - and one - not - so - very - good driver.
This is exactly the sort of reason why driving the car yourself (when the demo arrives), and making your own mind up is important.

I was lucky enough to drive the Stelvio Quadrifoglio at this year's Goodwood Festival of Speed (or rather more precisely at Alfa Romeo UK's Stelvio Qf Test Day at the Goodwood Circuit), but whilst it's a great 'driver's' SUV (probably the best out there), unlike a lot of the reviews I'd read, I thought that the higher CoG compared with the Giulia Quadrifoglio was very noticeable, both during turns and under heavy braking. It's certainly no sports car, despite it being quick and handling well (for an SUV!)

Despite the above, I haven't changed my mind, i.e. I'm going ahead with my (pre-)order, as the SQf should fit the bill as both my daily driver and dog mobile (I have 3 rottweilers) very well :-) Expecting my SQf to arrive in October; so I can post my initial impressions (on roads I'm familiar with) if you like(?)

Tilum
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(Post Link) post #8 of 154 Old 19-08-18 Thread Starter
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Tilum, I would - of-course - be interested in any feedback - that`s why I joined. Since you also have driven the Giulia QF, you obviously have some experience, which to me, makes your input even more interesting. I have worked for a car company - no longer with us - and have some experience of my own.

In my world, you should never evaluate a "STD" vehicle - with STD settings and non-racing tyres - on a track.

The specification of the SQF - incl. Vector assisted handling and "sound to die for", makes it - on paper - very appealing. I have no intention to do track-driving - I am done with that.

As indicated before -I don´t want/need a new vehicle, so I will gather data for 1-2 years.. I have spotted two vehicles which I will monitor:
- "my" dealers DEMO - ordered but not delivered: black with all goodies. Will keep about two years.
- one of the owners of Tetra Pak - has 6 cars. Former DEMO - red with all goodies. Problem with multi billioneres - you can`t push them.
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I have read all tests/evaluations I have managed to come about, but I have not seen any evaluation of:
-windsensitivity
-steering precision - although "quick steering" - also indicates good steering precision.
-"steer into a curve" - how well you can position a vehicle into a curve - without over/understeer.
- tramling - sensitivity for ruts
- chassis comfort/noise

and - of course - driving on ice and snow.
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Hi Tjalle, I'm a little confused by your posts; I'm all for people researching something before they buy, but is it really worth trying to find out so much about a car and trying to make a decision now on a car that you may (or may not) buy in 2 years time?!?
You may find that you set your heart on it, only to find in 2 years time that it's not the right car for you or your circumstances change.

Furthermore, whilst gauging other people's POV can be interesting, everyone is different and opinions will be subjective. As for magazine reviews, it's only worth 'taking these with a pinch of salt' i.e. don't take them as facts. A lot of journalists write articles to make them interesting to the reader, even at the expense of the truth. Just take Jeremy Clarkson for instance; he can be very entertaining, but he doesn't half talk a lot of nonsense sometimes. The problem is people then take his words about a car as fact, when in reality the opposite may well be true.

Nevertheless, I'll try to answer your questions as best as I can for now (based on my short time with the SQf):-
  • Test driving on a track - I agree that the true test will be how the car performs on roads (not the track), as that's where it will spend 99%+ of its time.
    But as I've only driven the SQf on the track that's all I can base my opinion on... to be honest I was a little disappointed by the SQf on track, but that's probably because it had been raved about in all the reviews I'd read. I've driven other cars on track, and it's definitely not a sports car - it's not lightweight, it has a large ground clearance, it's not sleek/aerodynamic, and it has a high Centre of Gravity.
    But you know all of that anyway, to state the obvious, it is after all an SUV!
  • Driving experience to date - Having said all of the above, that doesn't mean to say that I was disappointed in the car as an SUV. It was comfortable, well equipped, looked and sounded great, and I'm sure (based on how it felt during the brief drive on track) that it'll be a great, fun, special, competent all rounder for the road.
  • Comfort -It's a really nice cabin - not too cluttered, looks great, and rides well. The great thing is being able to switch on the adaptive dampers whilst being in Race or Dynamic mode, i.e. sporty throttle response, quicker gear changes, etc. but with a smooth ride. Didn't notice any wind noise as such, but then I was wearing a helmet!
  • Braking - It had great stopping power, and this was only with the standard steel discs! I've spec'd carbon ceramics, but the steels should be more than fine for road usage. Having said that, the car did feel rather squirmish under heavy braking - you had to modulate the steering to keep the car stable and in a straight line.
  • Steering - You can place the car where you want it (within reason), and it responds predictably. But even more impressive was (as with the Giulia Qf which I drove on roads) how it manages to combine a lovely smooth (velvety) feel to the steering, yet also be precise and responsive at the same time - a rare feat! It does however struggle more on sharp turn ins, but that's to be expected for this type of car.
  • Sound - For a bi-turbo the V6 engine sounds awesome. Alfa have done a brilliant job at giving the V6 TT very similar characteristics to a naturally aspirated engine. McLaren really could learn a thing or two from this! ...The engine(/exhaust) has a deep(ish) growl, and the pops sound great. It would be even better if it could rev higher though! (IIRC it redlines at 6700 rpm).
  • Tyres - The Pirellis P Zeros (as I've experienced on other cars I've owned) are 'okay' (but not brilliant) on a warm sunny day, and will no doubt be hopeless on colder/wet days. I'll probably change these to Michelins, ideally Pilot Sport 4S, as from my experience, the Michelins give noticeably more grip in all conditions and they seem to be more durable too!
  • Tramlining - Can't really comment on this as the track was smooth. Furthermore, I'd imagine that the type of tyres fitted will have an impact on this. I don't forsee an issue though.
  • Wind sensitivity, winter driving - Can't really comment yet, as it was a lovely British summer day (i.e. very sunny with no wind) when I drove it. My SQf should arrive in October/November, i.e. Autumn. So the weather will probably be windier then.

Hope that helps!
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Last edited by Tilum; 21-08-18 at 11:24.
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Thanks!

I planned purchase of my 2014 X4 35i, 2 years ahead of SOP. I have worked with vehicle development and can predict a lot with pictures, reviews and data.The X4 fit my bill - after lowering 35mm and installing new exhaust system - and I believe, the SQF will - even more so.

Reason for being so active right now is that I am developing a Plan B for another, more expensive project, which might fail and then I will buy a car regardless. I will now "chill down" and wait for own testdrive in about two months time, when dealer gets DEMO.

Very valuable INFO. Nothing there to scare me. I am looking forward to your input after receiving own vehicle.

I have a set of staggered Michelin 20" Pilot Sport 4S in my garage to replace my Pirelli P Zero RFT:s in the fall. I believe they will also fit SQF, so I will try to extend life by using my 9000 Turbo a bit more…...

Again - thanks.
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(Post Link) post #12 of 154 Old 23-08-18 Thread Starter
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I read review by Motor Trend. They don´t accept invitations to ultra smooth roads, but test on their own turf - which makes it more valuable.

Like "everybody", they like the design, character, engine peformance, sound, handling and are stunned with what can be done with a 2 ton vehicle. Again - outperforming Macan.

New is heavy criticism of body/parts fit and finish combined with "rattle and roar". This is not surprising - test made in spring with a - supposedly - pre-series vehicle, but also indicates that Alfa - probably - will not be able to deliver a "rock solid" vehicle. No surprise there.

Test vehicle equipped with ceramic brakes, which did not perform "smoothly".

Criticism of early red field on rev counter - to which I agree.
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Thanks for comment!

OK - I buy your arguments - no unique thread, but:
-yes, QF is a different animal! Apart from the engine and the body modifications (not only cosmetic), you have:
-vector supported handling (clutches at rear axles)
-three way adjustable dampers
-three way setting on gearbox. Same ZF as my X4, but strengthened and with a RACE mode=kick in gears.
-two - or three -way exhaust flaps for additional joy of driving
-unique setting of engine in RACE mode for enhanced sound
-unique 20" wheels: Alfa style.
-Brembo brakes - 6 pot at front.

I suggest you read some of the testdrives recently performed - also by UK editors - who puts QF ahead of Macan, but, of course, not ahead of JLR products.

As said above, I had discarded Stelvio as replacement of my X4, due to some minor things being less appealing, but QF rectifies them all.

I forgot: to my mind we are not talking about a trim level, but a heavily modified vehicle.
Hello there:

My other car is a Macan S, and the Quadrifoglio is MUCH MUCH funnier to drive than the Porsche....in particular the steering, handling, acceleration etc etc etc.....I really don't know how they did it......In the Macan when you want to do a U turn fast even with PTV plus....it feels heavy....in the Quadri.....it will do it effortlesly....maybe it has to do with that special rear differential stuff you wrote about???....
I spent a lot of time researching the Stelvio _(about a year) and I was not going to buy it (too expensive).....but I tested one about two weeks ago and......all my common sense disappeared, I just had to get one......I hope that wont happen to you!!!
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(Post Link) post #14 of 154 Old 23-08-18 Thread Starter
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It already has.....

As said before - I am trained to read pictures, specs and evaluations. Further more, I have worked with Alfa engineers, and they are good - especially their chassis people.

Yes, part of the handling performance is, very likely, torque vectoring through clutches at rear axles. I, however, have seen a possibel slight glitch - coming out of a bend, when rear "steps out" somewhat unnecessary. That can also be a driver error.
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On a slightly different note, but still in line with the title of the thread, is there any one on here from the UK that ordered a Stelvio Quadrifoglio via the pre-order (Excel spreadsheet order form) process? I could do with comparing views/news. If you have, please can you either post on this thread, or PM me.
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(Post Link) post #16 of 154 Old 24-08-18 Thread Starter
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Kannassee, I missed: you wrote:"even with PTV plus". I have read somewhere, that Macan has an optional torque vectoring feature. Does "PTV plus" (Power Torque Vectoring?) mean that option, and have you driven or have that on your vehicle?

I am very interested in understanding the Porsche approach. SAAB presented - shortly before going down the tube - a system with planetary gears on each of rear driveshafts* - enabling on-off torque vectoring.

I have seen no in-depth description of the Alfa system - whether there is only on-off or partial engagement of clutches.


*SAAB was - at the very end -allowed by GM to have AWD vehicles.

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I should - of course - have looked at Google/You Tube first.

Yes - PTV is Porsche Torque Vectoring. Plus indicates PDK!?

They obtain this by applying - moderate - brake pressure on one rear brake only. This is a "negative" way of obtaining rotational torque on the vehicle - but might work perfectly. I, however, prefer the Alfa way, where one rear axle is partially or completely disengaged - I have not been able to get a description.
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I have failed to get a full technical description of the Alfa Torque Vectoring - only a verbal description from the Chief Engineer: "It is possibel to send 100% of torque to any wheel!?" I doubt that they can send 100% ot torque to a front wheel, but probably to any rear wheel. This explains the "step out", that I have seen on videos from vehicle coming out of curves - stepping hard on the throttle, one will have 100% torque to outer rear wheel. Rectified by "moderate" throttle, but could be seen as a - slight - glitch.

Also I found that Stelvio has a SLA (Short Long Arm) - double whishbone front suspension - not the "traditional" McPherson. SLA was first introduced by MB - or possibly Honda - but is today rare. Considered to be "a step above" McPherson.
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I struck GOLD or "Pay Dirt", as they say in the gold fields.

I, finally, found an in-detail description of Alfa Torque Vectoring - at Giulia threads - page 3 (4 weeks ago) - no 6 - "Elektro hydraulic braking"- "quad training manual.pdf".

Short:
-operates only on rear wheels
-includes fully controllable clutches left/right.
-includes lh/rh planetary gears
-can send 0-100% torque to either wheel.
-controlled by Integrated Chassis Control, which monitors; steering angel, yaw velocity, X/Y acceleration and vehicle speed.

One of situations described is accelerating out of a turn, where torque is directed to outer wheel, which is consistent with "lead footed" journalists hanging out rear end when exciting curve on a track.


I forgot: there is also an in-depth description of the engine and all its systems/details: I would never own a QF without proper warranty or insurance!!

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There is also a description of the exhaust system.

EU regulates noise level, with a test, where vehicle passes a microphone, and accelerates while passing. Ferrari, some 25-30 years ago managed - with help of Italian government? - to create a special rule for "high performance vehicles=Ferrari, that they could use higher gear=lower revs=lower level of sound.

According to dealer, QF will switch to open exhaust valves at 3500 rpm - safely away from microphone?

Normally, exhausts are forced back and force in silencer to reduce noise. STD procedure. Exhausts are let out through inner endpipes.

When valves opens, exhausts goes straigth through silencer and exits through outer end pipes, creating a somewhat higher level of sound.

Also:in RACE, Alfa has done some tricks with the engine to create "sparkles", which adds to the fun.
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Description above is Giulia 2WD Torque Vectoring. Obviously only working on rear wheels.

There are two inconsistent and fawlty statements from Alfa re. Stelvio QF.
-"60% of torque can be sent to front wheels"
-"100% of torque can be sent to any wheel"

Flow of torque is from front to rear - front engine. They just need to keep 60% up front.

Only up to 60% of torque can then be directed to any of front wheels - if that.

The tricky thing is cooperation TV- Torque Vectoring and AWD, both are directed by ICC- Integrated Chassis Control.

I believe they don`t interact - this would be tricky. AWD system will remove torque from "wildly" spinning wheel, without ICC checking with Torque Vectoring algoritms.

Obviously AWD vehicle will have three more clutch packs than 2WD Giulia.
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Kannassee, I missed: you wrote:"even with PTV plus". I have read somewhere, that Macan has an optional torque vectoring feature. Does "PTV plus" (Power Torque Vectoring?) mean that option, and have you driven or have that on your vehicle?

I am very interested in understanding the Porsche approach. SAAB presented - shortly before going down the tube - a system with planetary gears on each of rear driveshafts* - enabling on-off torque vectoring.

I have seen no in-depth description of the Alfa system - whether there is only on-off or partial engagement of clutches.


*SAAB was - at the very end -allowed by GM to have AWD vehicles.
Hello Tjalle:

You got it right, it stands probably for Porsche Torque Vectoring....its an extra in the Macan, it is expensive, and I dont think it is worth it.....it works with the brakes.....and I prefer the Alfa system over the PTV over .....200%...???....lol
They had a recall/update regarding the system back in 2015.....the one in my car got it when it was at the dealer....but I dont like the feel of it when making sharp u turns (you can hear/ feel the brakes being applied) it is not smooth at all like the Alfa’s.
By the way the car that the Stelvio replaced was an XC60 R Design with the Polestar thing and the stiff suspension....it was funnier doing the tight U turns in it than in the Macan. .....It was a shame that I had to replace the RDesign, that T6 with the Polestar tune was a BEAST!!!.....The engine felt like more powerfull than the Macan but the ride/handling was rough.
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I struck GOLD or "Pay Dirt", as they say in the gold fields.

I, finally, found an in-detail description of Alfa Torque Vectoring - at Giulia threads - page 3 (4 weeks ago) - no 6 - "Elektro hydraulic braking"- "quad training manual.pdf".

Short:
-operates only on rear wheels
-includes fully controllable clutches left/right.
-includes lh/rh planetary gears
-can send 0-100% torque to either wheel.
-controlled by Integrated Chassis Control, which monitors; steering angel, yaw velocity, X/Y acceleration and vehicle speed.

One of situations described is accelerating out of a turn, where torque is directed to outer wheel, which is consistent with "lead footed" journalists hanging out rear end when exciting curve on a track.


I forgot: there is also an in-depth description of the engine and all its systems/details: I would never own a QF without proper warranty or insurance!!
Lol....I agree with you 100 percent!!!.....here in the US Alfa has a bad reputation regarding mech breakdowns so an extended warranty is almost a MUST!!!....just joking....by the way the extended warranty costs almost half as the Porsche’s one
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Kannassee, I take it you have a Stelvio QF: I saw in an US evaluation, that in RACE, they got the higher (nice) sound "all the way", which in Europe- very likely - would not pass exterior sound test. Hence - according to dealer - delay to 3500rpm before opening up.

Can you confirm US version?
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Kannassee, I take it you have a Stelvio QF: I saw in an US evaluation, that in RACE, they got the higher (nice) sound "all the way", which in Europe- very likely - would not pass exterior sound test. Hence - according to dealer - delay to 3500rpm before opening up.

Can you confirm US version?
I'm not sure about LHD Euro variants, but the RHD variants (e.g. for the UK market) that I saw/drove at Goodwood had the sports exhaust 'active' throughout the rev range. I'm pretty sure it's the same for LHD U.S. variants (looking at YouTube videos). I'd be surprised if it's restricted to 3.5k rpm and above only though - my Maserati GranCabrio MC's sports exhaust is always 'active' throughout the rev range when 'Sport' mode is selected. Some variants of the GranTurismo and GranCabrio have the sports exhaust 'deactivated' below 3.5k rpm to avoid a monotone droning sound when cruising at low revs.
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