Alfa Romeo Tonale: Brera’s beauty lives on in hybrid SUV

Alfa Romeo Tonale

The Alfa Romeo Tonale Concept has been revealed at the 2019 Geneva Motor Show and by heck, have they done it again. Alfa Romeo, in its second attempt at an SUV, has made another looker. If any marque was going to manage it, it was Alfa.

Yes, it’s a hybrid, but let’s go through the looks first, because the Tonale owes quite a bit of its handsomeness to its ancestors, Alfas of old.

A new-era hybrid SUV inspired by the Brera

Alfa Romeo Tonale

First, you look it dead in the snout. We’re in very familiar territory at the front of the Tonale, with the “three plus three” light design evoking the Brera and the SZ before it. The teledial wheels run deep through Alfa’s heritage.

The body is muscular but not excessive, with a strong belt line and distinctive arches. The surfaces down the side are very smooth and clean, as the window line flourishes upwards at the back.

At the rear, we’re back on the Brera, with the centrally tapering window and “three plus three” design continuing in the lights.

‘Alfa Romeo Lifestyle and Social communities’

Alfa Romeo Tonale

The interior is dominated by the 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster and 10.25-inch touch screen. It is via these that you can access the ‘Alfa Romeo Lifestyle and Social communities’… 

‘Alfista’ gives you access to marque-specific clubs, events, gatherings, drives and meets. In between RSVPing to these, you can read up on all the latest Alfa Romeo news.

The ‘Paddock’ is the Alfa Romeo market for upgrades for your Tonale and merchandise, all available at your fingertips. Hmm…

Under the skin

Alfa Romeo Tonale

Under that delightful Brera-inspired skin is a hybrid powertrain that can be deployed in different ways via different driving modes. The ‘DNA’ system we see in current Alfa Romeos has been adapted for this hybrid application.

’Dual power’ mode replaces ‘Dynamic’ for maximum shove, while ‘Natural’ mode continues, managing both electric and internal combustion powertrains automatically for optimised performance. ‘Advance E’ takes the place of ‘Advance Efficiency, in this case prioritising electric power. The interior fully lights up to correspond with your driving mode, the above being ‘Dual Power’.

Wait… Tonale..?

Alfa Romeo Tonale

Yes, it’s an intriguing name. They haven’t plucked it out of thin air, though. Tonale comes from the name of an Alpine pass, not far from the Stelvio, incidentally. Alfa’s future SUV naming strategy ought to become clear at this point…

We’ll forgive the cheesy social media waffle and the strange name on one condition, Alfa. Make the production version look like this. If the world must be flooded with SUVs, they might as well be as pretty as this.