New Alfa Romeo CEO Isn’t Thrilled With the Tonale, Delays SUV Until 2022

After taking charge of Alfa Romeo earlier this year, Frenchman Jean-Philippe Imparato has reportedly decided to delay the launch of the upcoming Tonale crossover, having become dissatisfied with the new model’s performance.
Pre-production Alfa Romeo Tonale 6 photos
Photo: cochespias/Instagram
Pre-production Alfa Romeo TonalePre-production Alfa Romeo TonalePre-production Alfa Romeo TonalePre-production Alfa Romeo TonalePre-production Alfa Romeo Tonale
According to Autonews, the Tonale will now enter production no sooner than 2022, as opposed to sometime later this year. Overall, the delay shouldn’t cost Alfa Romeo more than a few months.

So, what’s the problem, specifically? It appears that Imparato would like to improve upon the Tonale’s plug-in hybrid system, although we’re not sure in what capacity. It could be power, but it’s more likely something to do with its fully electric range, which remains a mystery, just like the powertrain itself.

What we do know about the Tonale is that it will utilize the same platform as the Jeep Compass, whose plug-in hybrid system consists of a 1.3-liter turbocharged gasoline unit, an electric motor, and an 11.4 kWh battery. You can’t do more than 28 miles (45 km) in electric-only mode, which might be something that would rub the new Alfa CEO the wrong way—although again, we don’t know if the two cars will share the same PHEV configuration.

“The Tonale marks the debut of the brand in the premium compact utility vehicle segment and does so in line with the characteristics that have always identified each Alfa Romeo model. The goal is to deliver the best driving dynamics in the segment and to apply electrification in perfect Alfa Romeo style,” said the Italian brand back in 2019 when it unveiled the Tonale Concept in Geneva.

Once it arrives, the Tonale will be Alfa Romeo’s first car built under the Stellantis umbrella, as well as the company’s first new model since the Stelvio broke cover back in 2016—the Giulia sports sedan came out in the summer of 2015.

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About the author: Sergiu Tudose
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Sergiu got to experience both American and European car "scenes" at an early age (his father drove a Ford Fiesta XR2 supermini in the 80s). After spending over 15 years at local and international auto publications, he's starting to appreciate comfort behind the wheel more than raw power and acceleration.
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