If you care about efficiency, then because you can't have a Tonale diesel (in the UK at least), you'll probably be ordering this Alfa in 1.5-litre 48V Hybrid form. This is a Hybrid that uses the electric motor by completely disconnecting the petrol engine, which can remain idle for up to 47% of the time - or up to 62% in town. The powertrain's built-in e-motor acts to shift the operating point of the combustion engine, ensuring that it can reach maximum efficiency even in a cold vehicle. This function speeds up the catalyser warm-up transition, with further benefits in terms of fuel consumption and emissions.
The hybrid power supply has multiple advantages, not least in start-up in 100% electric mode, which is smooth and silent with no fuel wasted. Subsequently, the Tonale can continue to be driven in full-electric mode, compatible with power demand and the battery charge level. Electric-only power supply can also be used for the 'e-creeping' function, to make a series of short movements forward with no pressure on the accelerator, for example in a traffic jam. The car can also be parked in 100% electric mode, either in first gear or in reverse (Alfa calls this 'e-parking'). In addition, the hybrid power supply is designed to recover energy during both braking and deceleration.
The alternative to the 1.5-litre 48V Hybrid is the Plug-in Hybrid Q4 model we told you about in our 'Driving' section. Here, the 306-volt, 15.5 kWh lithium-ion battery supplies an electric range of over 49 miles in the urban cycle and more than 372 miles of total range, making the Tonale Plug-in Hybrid one of the most efficient plug-in hybrid SUVs. The PHEV powertrain reduces CO2 emissions to 29g/km and improves fuel consumption to deliver 217.3mpg in the WLTP cycle. With the aim of providing maximum efficiency, it takes less than 2.5 hours to fully charge the battery from a 7.4 kW charger.