In fact the top is actually another kilometre beyond the building you can see as you approach and it is even necessary to descend a little into Italy to find a col marker sign, but that's worth it too because on a clear day Mont Blanc (or Monte Blanco anyway) is right on display. It's brilliant.
The only downside during our visit, and this is only because we visited at the end of October, was the bitter cold. It was so bad with the wind chill on the long descent that I even had to stop a dozen times on the way down just to thaw out my hands so I could brake. It only took me just 1 3/4 hours to get to the top with the continuous gradient but then a whole extra hour to get down in this way! There was a lot of snow by the side of the road on those final 8km, as the pictures show.