That’s what adventure is all about, right?
Five Things I Like About The 2022 Subaru Outback Wilderness
- I love how the Subaru Outback drives like a regular comfortable car on the highway while we pursue regular life, but it’s outfitted for the environment it’s designed for — the wilderness. Even though I wasn’t navigating stands of trees or rugged roads, I felt like the Outback Wilderness performed like a champ on the highway. However, I do have to say, it seemed to have a mind of its own at times. My son, who was in the backseat, kept thinking I was putting on the brakes, but it was Subaru’s Eyesight driver assist system pre-braking as traffic ahead of us slowed. The system also adjusts for lane position, so if you drift from one side to the other, or change lanes without signaling, the system will attempt to nudge you back into the center of the lane. It can feel as though the car is moving back and forth on its own. Drivers can turn off the Eyesight system by clicking the vehicle icon on the media screen and then disabling the features you don’t want active..
- The ground clearance in the Outback Wilderness was awesome. It was really easy to get in and out, but I can also see it handling the road up to my favorite hiking trails with ease. I’m only sad that my test drive was in December and not in the fall as I know I could have gone to some hard-to-reach places to see some beautiful changing leaves.
- You wouldn’t believe how many compliments I received on the Geyser Blue color, available only in the Wilderness. Although my original pick would have been the Autumn Green, the blue definitely grew on me, and now I’d consider that color for my next car.
- Though I’m used to driving a 7 seater, the Outback surprised me with the room we had. I can see why loyal Subaru fans love the Outback. My son was perfectly comfrotable in the backseat throughout our trip – something I usually expect in larger cars with lots of interior space.
- The unique look and feel of the Wilderness edition. From the emblems on the side and rear of the car to the matte panel on the hood (designed to reduce glare!), cladding over the wheels along the lower side panels (to deflect rocks and mud) to embossed Wilderness crest on the head rests, little touches let you know its mission.
It’s More Rugged Than I Imagined
The Outback Wilderness is an all wheel drive car –Subarus are always all wheel drive– with a 4 cylinder turbo that delivers 260 horsepower and 277 pound-feet of torque that can tow up to 3,500 pounds. That’s plenty of power and a good amount of towing for a small SUV.
All I could think about is, if I were in cold weather with lots of snow or rugged terrain, I would feel better about owning a car like this. But I live in Texas, where there is little of that. So, even though I found out the Wilderness wasn’t the car for me, I did fall in love with Subaru and am not ruling out a different model: There are eight trim levels of the Outback, for the record. Prices start at $26,945 for the base model and top out at $39,945 for the Touring XT model. And not just because Subaru has the best commercials (Puppies! Dogs! Kids! Need I go on?) and that I love how they give back to local charities. But if I ever do run into a situation where I need capability I know a Subaru can deliver.
And, I wouldn’t feel so guilting getting my car dirty, because who cares? That just means you had fun using the car the way it was intended.
Who This Car Is For
- The rugged, more adventure focused soul
- Subaru loyal fans
- Road trip enthusiasts looking for comfort on the highway and a good off-road adventure when you get there
- Buyers who want an adventure-ready SUV
- The family who likes to hike, camp and climb over rocks
Basic Specs Of The 2022 Subaru Outback Wilderness SUV
- Wheelbase 108.1″
- Length 191.3″
- 5-door, 5 passenger car
- Cargo capacity is 32.5 cubic feet with the rear seats up and 75.7 cubic feet when they are folded
- Curb weight is 3,896 lbs
- 4 cylinder, 2.4 liter turbocharged BOXER engine with 260 hp and 277 lb-ft of torque
- Fuel economy 22 city / 26 highway / 24 combined
- Towing capacity is 3,500 lbs.
- Price $36,995; there are a few add-ons such as footwell lights ($239), a seat back protector for the cargo area ($122) and you can upgrade the multimedia system and add a power moonroof ($1,845); destination charge is $1,175. Price of the model we test drove, about $40,376.
How is the Outback Wilderness Different?
Subaru added some key features to the Wilderness edition to make it even more capable off road. These include:
- An upgraded suspension
- Yokohama Geolandar all-terrain tires
- Advanced X-MODE that allows you to choose between dirt/snow and deep out/snow
- Ladder-type roof rack system that can hold up to 700 lbs.
- StarTex leatherette water repellant upholstery
- Front skid plate
- The Outback’s ground clearance rises to 9.5″ from 8.7″
- The approach angle, or distance between the lower front bumper and the bottom of the front tire, increases to 20.0″ from 18.6″
- The departure angle, or the distance between the bottom of the rear tire and the lower rear bumper, increases to 23.6″ from 21.7″
The Outback Wilderness left me thinking that maybe we should spend more time in the mountains, off road, seeking out creeks and trails. And plan more getaways. And find more adventure that will leave us feeling rugged. And wild. And free.
Disclosure: The Subaru Outback Wilderness was provided for this review but all opinions are my own.