Recently joined the Stellantis group, Alfa Romeo has announced an ambitious product plan that should enable it to increase its sales. The new Tonale, announced as a relaunch model, will be one of the main architects of this rebirth.
It is a compact SUV, 4.53 m long, with a solid design, powered by hybrid engines whose price starts at €35,400.
Elements closely resembling those of the Arkana. Renault’s new SUV. The French has the same size (4.56 m), an equally understandable design, hybrid engines and above all prices that are finally very close to the same finish and engine.
The new Tonale is built on the technical basis of its American cousin, the Jeep Compass. He takes the platform together with the engine, but with the naked eye it is impossible to make a connection. Tonale is a true Alfa with a very Latin design consisting of smooth lines, curves and strong styling elements such as this fearsome look featuring very thin LED lights and a cloverleaf grille: simple, attractive and daring. Courage, Renault has shown, in 2021, with Arkana, the first coupe SUV in its history. The styling teams had a great idea to spread this concept that combines sedan, SUV and coupe. A recipe commonly offered by premium brands that positions the Arkana as the most exciting car in the current lineup.
Inside, the transalpine also scores. Chic and well finished, it offers quality materials such as Alcantara or bonded leather for example. It does not ignore technology with a large format digital instruments, a 10” touch screen with all the current connectivity and even a driving system that operates semi-autonomously level 2. Arkana has nothing to envy in terms of completion. Plastics are of the same quality. It is even foamed at the top. On the other hand, the large design of the dashboard, the lacquered plastic inserts and the central touch pad can be cool.
Practical features: two nice surprises
In terms of practicality, our two opponents are neck and neck. Arkana offers more space in the back and especially in the legs. The space on the toneboard is a little nice and the easement tunnel blocks the middle section. In contrast, the Italian offers a higher trunk volume with 500 liters of base versus 480 for the Arkana.
Indeed, the Italian makes good use of this space because the hybrid battery is located between the front seats in the service tunnel, while for the Renault, the latter is placed under the trunk floor. Once the seat is folded, the Tonale takes off with 1,550 liters versus 1,263 liters for the French. Both have a 2/3-1/3 section but Tonale adds a sliding section.
In turn, Arkana has a large number of storage spaces and above all large, like door bins. With pros and cons in both cases, it’s ultimately a tie between the two rivals in terms of practicality.
Budget: Well-placed arcana
We did not expect Alfa Romeo in a good position in the budget segment and yet, the Tonale defends itself well against the French, especially thanks to its 5-year warranty, against 2 for the Arkana and its selling price very close to the finish. okay But the Renault SUV is still more competitive. It avoids the ecological malus while the Tonale can get up to a penalty of € 300. In addition, its engine has a timing chain while the Tonale has a belt that needs frequent replacement. Finally, the Arkana consumes less according to the WLTP cycle (Arkana E-Tech 145: 4.8 l/100 km / Alfa Romeo Tonale 1.5 Hybrid: 5.9 l/100 km).
Equipment: Amazing tonal
A little more than 300 € separates our two models of the day with the same finish. Tonale quickly makes up for this delay with a richer equipment package that includes standard 20” alloy wheels, LED matrix headlights, integrated leather seats, hands-free tailgate, etc.
Top engines can receive controlled suspension and Alcantara trim. Device not available or optional in Arkana list. Tonale focuses on the topic of price/equipment ratio.