Alfa Romeo Tonale First Look - Is it as ugly as it sounds?

The new Alfa Romeo Tonale is the brand’s first car to feature the new electrified powertrain. Its beautifully crafted exterior seamlessly embraces the sporty DNA you would expect from an Alfa. But it has an unfortunate name in the Western world, where we don’t have Italian accents.

The word Tonale (To-na-leh) sounds nice in Italian. It takes its name from an Italian Pass, similar to the Stelvio Pass, but quickly got westernised as a toenail. 

A recent post on TopGear claims Alfa tackled this head-on by releasing a special edition Tonale Ingroné (ingrown toenail). You can’t say they don’t have a sense of humour.

The article says that the Ingroné features foot spas in the passenger footwells, so I can’t verify that it’s entirely true – even if it is hilarious!

Alfa Romeo Tonale Alfa Red

What is the Alfa Romeo Tonale?

Despite the unfortunate name, it is a typically beautiful Italian sports car. The compact SUV shares a platform with the Jeep Compass with an exclusive 160hp, 1.5L petrol 48v hybrid Variable-Geometry Turbo (VGT) powering it.

It rivals cars like BMW X1, Audi Q3 and Volvo XC40.

Since this was an exclusive preview and the car is left-hand drive, I wasn’t allowed to drive it. However, Alfa says the compact SUV will accelerate through its 7-speed dual-clutch transmission from 0-60 in 8.8 seconds.

Is the Alfa Romeo Tonale AWD (all-wheel drive)?

Being based on the Jeep Compass, the Tonale is primarily front-wheel drive. However, the plug-in hybrid model offers 4WD, thanks to the electric motor on the rear axle.

Alfa Romeo Tonale digital display

Trim Levels

Drivers in the U.K. can expect the choice of 2 main trim levels – Ti and Veloce. Both have six colour choices to choose from. These are Alfa Red, Alfa White, Alfa Black, Misano Blue, Montreal Green and Vesuvio Grey.

Alfa Romeo Ti Spec

The Ti starts off the Tonale range, featuring a 10.25-inch touch screen, Bluetooth, Navigation, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, a wireless charging pad and even Amazon Alexa integration.

This means you can set your car as a safe place for your amazon parcels, allowing the courier to leave packages in your boot.

The Ti is styled with a satin chrome V front bezel, 18-inch diamond cut alloys and black painted mirror caps. The sports steering wheel is wrapped in leather and embodies the start button.

Alfa Remeo Veloce Spec

The Veloce gets even sportier styling cues with the chrome V front bezel being swapped for a dark one, Veloce badges and body kit.

Gloss black window surrounds, tinted rear windows and 19-inch diamond cut alloys with red painted Brembo brake callipers round off the Veloce.

Alfa Romeo Tonale Price UK

Alfa has just released pricing for the Alfa Romeo Tonale. Order books are now open and it has some pretty attractive PCP finance deals too. The Ti starts at £39,995 on the road, while the Veloce is from £42,495. [Correct at time of publishing 16.08.2022]

Alfa has also introduced an industry-first way to protect the residual value of your Tonale. It is called an NFT digital certificate.

NFT stands for non-fungible token; basically, it’s like a very comprehensive digital service book.

I know it seems vague. It is. Everyone is eagerly awaiting more details on this NFT certificate from Alfa. For now, this will have to do:

“With the customer’s consent, the NFT will record vehicle data, generating a certificate that can be used to assure the car has been properly maintained, with a positive impact on its residual value.”

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