Say hello to…
…the Alfa Romeo Tonale now available as a PHEV with an EV range of more than 40 miles which means it sits in the 8% benefit-in-kind tax band. The addition of a plug-in version means the small family SUV can go head-to-head with premium rivals such as the BMW X1, Volvo XC40 and the Mercedes GLA.
The fleet-friendly Tonale uses a 180hp 1.3-litre petrol engine to power the front wheels, while a 120hp motor and 15.5kWh battery back drive the rear wheels. Total power is limited to 280hp.
The Tonale is available in three trim levels:
- Edizione Speciale
Included as standard on the Ti are 18-inch alloys, LED matrix headlights, cloth interior, leather wrapped steering wheel, rear armrest, 10.2-inch infotainment touchscreen, satnav, wireless charging, 4x USB sockets, powered driver’s seat, keyless entry, powerfold door mirrors, front and rear parking sensors, rear view camera, traffic sign recognition, adaptive cruise control and puddle lights.
Veloce trim adds 19-inch alloys, bodykit, privacy glass, red brake calipers, Alcantara seats, dual-stage suspension and aluminium shift paddles.
Standard equipment on the Edizione Speciale adds 20-inch alloys, 12.3-inch instrument screen and connected services.
Is The Alfa Romeo Tonale PHEV Suitable For My Fleet
When we first drove the ‘regular’ hybrid Tonale FleetandLeasing.com concluded the PHEV was the one to wait for in the main due to the high taxation of the initial cars (33% BIK) and the low tax position of the PHEV version at 8% – lower than most plug-in hybrids because it has a 40mile EV range. We were not wrong.
However, we also pointed to some reliability issues we had with our initial test car. While our PHEV was without fault, we did notice that the battery pack that’s mounted under the car beneath the rear seats was not consistently mounted and as a consequence was more visible on some cars than others.
In terms of practical space, the Tonale PHEV sees a 115 litre drop in space to 385 litres as almost all the space below the false floor is removed, leaving room only for charging cables.
Leasing An Alfa Romeo Tonale PHEV
Leasing an Alfa Romeo Tonale from Intelligent Car Leasing on a 3+36 contract with 20,000 miles a year costs £711 a month, putting it squarely between the new (and more expensive) BMW X1 PHEV and the Volvo XC40 PHEV. According to Gensen Report at running costs will be £72 a month.
Driving An Alfa Romeo Tonale PHEV
Adding a plug-in hybrid powertrain has given Alfa Romeo the chance to improve the way the Tonale drives in comparison to the petrol version.
The biggest improvement is in the automatic gearbox, which is now much smoother allowing for an overall more relaxed experience. The car also switches between petrol and electric totally smoothly. With the electric motor powering the rear wheels the car also behaves in less frenetic way with no scrabble from the tyres when the road is wet.
However, the steering seems unchanged, it is quick and light, but has lost the feedback of previous Alfas. Ride comfort in the softer suspension setting is only just okay. Activate the sport setting and the ride is just too harsh for UK roads. However in both modes there is little in the way of body roll which is a good thing.
Driving the Tonale also reminds us of two weaknesses in an otherwise interesting and stylish cabin. Firstly, the very premium gearshift paddles are so large they inhibit use of the steering column mounted stalks for indicators and wipers which means you have to either have very long fingers or reach around the paddles to use the stalks.
The second cabin design issue is that the rear seat headrests don’t fold down even though they block a significant amount of view out of the rear windscreen.
Back up front, the infotainment system is logical enough and the screen quality is first rate even if the layout is set up for left-hand drive; for instance the heated steering wheel control is under the left seat menu.
The materials used for the upper level of the dashboard and the seats are good but drops away as you look lower down and aren’t a match for the new BMW X1 or the current Volvo XC40.
FleetandLeasing.com Verdict On The Alfa Romeo Tonale PHEV
Adding a PHEV to the line-up gives the Alfa Romeo Tonale some fleet appeal, but premium rivals are still more appealing.
Alfa Romeo Tonale PHEV
- Model: Tonale Veloce
- Power: 280hp
- Torque: 270Nm
- Max speed: 128mph
- 0-62mph: 6.2s
- Official mpg: 217.3mpg
- CO2 emissions: 29g/km