By Larry Lark, contributor
Residents of the PNW are no strangers to Subaru. In fact, they seem to be everywhere.
The 2022 Subaru Outback Wilderness debuts as the most rugged and capable Outback ever.
The all-new Outback Wilderness debuts for the 2022 model year and is ready for adventure with a standard 2.4-liter turbocharged Subaru Boxer engine, advanced dual function X-MODE, elevated 9.5-inch ground clearance, all-terrain tires, upgraded suspension and unique exterior and interior styling.
The Outback delivers the optimal blend of SUV capability and car-like ride and handling with standard Subaru Symmetrical All-Wheel Drive, Active Torque Vectoring, Vehicle Dynamics Control and X-MODE with Hill Descent Control.
Standard dual-function X-MODE includes Snow/Dirt and Deep Snow/Mud modes. Exclusive to Outback Wilderness, a new advanced feature for X-MODE allows the vehicle to switch automatically from low-speed managed driving to speeds over 25 mph without interruption of power or performance.
For 2022, Outback is offered in Base, Premium, Limited, Touring, Onyx Edition XT, all-new Wilderness, Limited XT and Touring XT trim levels.
Outback Wilderness adds exclusive styling with all-new front and rear bumpers, bold hexagonal front grille, larger wheel arch cladding, front skid plate, unique hex-designed LED fog lights, and an anti-glare hood decal in matte-black finish. Window trim and exterior badges have a black finish and new Subaru Wilderness badges are emblazoned on the front fenders and rear tailgate.
High contrast accents in an anodized copper-finish signal useful contact points such as tow hook anchor points and roof rail tie-down points. Wilderness also utilizes a more utilitarian fixed ladder-type roof rack system, with an exceptional static load limit of 700 lbs., allowing adventurers to safely use a roof-top tent on the trail.
The DOHC, four-cylinder, 2.4-liter turbocharged engine is mated to an eight-speed, automatic, continuously variable transmission. The pair generates 260 horsepower and 277 lb-ft of torque. Outback Wilderness seats five adults and provides 24 miles per gallon fuel economy in combined city and highway driving.
The suspension on Outback Wilderness has been tuned for improved stability on rough terrain while retaining ride comfort and handling performance on the open road. The front and rear shock absorbers and springs were increased in length to provide more suspension travel to accommodate the increased ground clearance.
The Base model comes with an extensive list of standard features including EyeSight driver assist technology featuring advanced adaptive cruise control with lane centering; Apple CarPlay and Android Auto; LED steering responsive headlights with high beam assist; rear vision camera with adaptive guidelines; hill descent control; and LED fog lights.
And it only gets better from there. Wilderness comes with dual USB ports, 12V outlet, heated and ventilated StarTex water-repellant seats, dark tint privacy glass, hands-free power lift-gate,
brushed aluminum pedals, full-size spare wheel and tire, and exclusive badging.
There’s a reason why Subaru is becoming ubiquitous with the Northwest. The brand seems to cater to our climate and practicality. Wilderness is both of those attributes on steroids, delivering safety and adventure in all four seasons.
The Outback is built at Subaru of Indiana Automotive (SIA) in Lafayette, Indiana along with the Ascent, Legacy, and Impreza.
Base Price: $38,120
Price As Driven: $38,120
Destination charge is included in base price. Vehicles are provided b the manufacturer. List price may vary at local dealerships.