The 2022 Subaru Outback and the Subaru Forester belong in that strange category of 4-Wheel SUVs with light and mid-off roading capabilities. The 2022 models are the latest refreshes of the iconic cars and large step-ups from their 2021 predecessors, but which Off-road SUV is the best?

Subaru Outback

The Exterior

Starting from the front, the Subaru Outback still retains its iconic grille and bumper design–simple lines with powerful silver accents. The standard model sits 8.7-inches above ground and rocks adaptive LED headlights and foglights.

The Subaru Forester, being the stubbier of the two options, has a slightly smaller grille and bumper. It is black, with tiny silver accents that nod back to older models and a textured lower bumper that lends it a rugged look. It sports 16- wheels, 8.7 inches of ground clearance, and a near-identical LED and fog light setup, factoring in design differences, of course.

On both cars, you’ll find chrome accents, spoilers, LED taillights, and roof rails.

The body length is the biggest difference between both sports utility vehicles discounting their trim designs. The Outback is larger, longer, and shorter than the Forester. It weighs 3637 pounds to the Forester’s 3449, and it’s 10 inches longer and precisely two inches shorter.

Much of the extra weight on the Outback is for the benefit of a slightly larger trunk and a more spacious five-seat carriage.


Subaru generously slathered leather all around the interior of both their 2022 Forester and Outback. Every inch is nearly covered in high-quality double-stitched leather that is complemented by a soft-touch synthetic material for the dashboard and infotainment areas.

Speaking of which, both are radically different in layout, and screen size. The Forester retains the previous year’s design, which is an 8-inch compact screen with dials, nobs, and other important features set below the large screen. The Forester also has a secondary screen that provides you with real-time information like the weather temperature, and access to the rear-view cameras.

The Outback adopts the borderless display style that is all the rage now. It is over 15 inches across, and it lets you do everything from launch apps to turn on the air conditioner. It sits at the center of the cabin, and the only other screen is a 4-inch screen to complement the analog speedometer.

Performance and Handling

If you’re looking for torque and power, either car will serve you just fine. They feel near-identical behind the wheel. Under the hood of The Outback and Forester, you’ll find a 182hp Boxer-4 Petrol Engine, with 176 pounds per foot of torque.

They both use continuously variable-speed automatic transmission and have four-wheel drive. The combination of all these features makes Subarus’ move very well despite their limited engines. The Four Wheel Drive train squeezes every bit of traction from each wheel, and the CVT transmission is one of the snappiest we’ve had the pleasure of driving.

They both corner beautifully and handle acceleration well enough. The Forester and Outback only start to feel different when you consider weight. The Fuel efficiency of the Forester is marginally better than the Outback. Expect 33 miles per gallon out of the Forester and 26 out of the Outback.

It’s important to mention that the Wilderness Edition of the Outback comes with a 260 hp 2-4 liter, 4 cylinder engine. The Outback can reach up to 3500 lbs on the highest specifications.


A lot of factors affect the estimated retail price of your vehicle, but arguably the most important consideration is the Suggested Retail Price. It’s what the manufacturer estimates the car should retail for. Naturally, it typically costs a lot more, and when you consider the transportation charge, you could easily add $1000 or more to the original retail price. The MSRP price for the Forester is somewhere in the range of $24,795 to $34,895, while the Outback starts from $26,945 to $39,945.


Both the Subaru Forester and Outback offer the Subaru basic package of 3 years or 30,000 miles. Confirming the warranties won’t make deciding between either easier.


Both the Subaru Outback and Forester make a solid case for SUV hybrids and cars that do more than one thing well. On the base models, you won’t go claiming the outbacks and climbing steep hills, but with the all-wheel drive train, engine, and advanced navigational technology available, some light offroad traversal should not prove too difficult.

That said, it might come down to aesthetic preference, personal bias, and how badly you want those extra inches of sweet storage space. The more powerful engine in the wilderness trim of the Outback is another objective reason to purchase it. The Forster, all through upgrades, stuck to the basic engine, but that should not matter too much if you’re not hauling every luggage.

Either choice will serve you well, but if you’re looking for the best car, based on the data gathered, then it’s the Subaru Outback.

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Pavlo Prannyk
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