The new 2022 Subaru Outback Wilderness is the first of a new trim line of off-road focused vehicles from Subaru. The Outback Onyx Edition is well-known in the enthusiast community as a sales hit from Subaru, and this new 2022 automobile is a highly efficient and comfortable crossover version of the Onyx.

It features a powerful engine and is highly capable even in the harshest conditions and roughest terrains. The Wilderness is seen as a rough-road version of the Outback, and in this guide, we will be taking our first look at this car.

Quirks and Characteristics

The Wilderness is built on the same basis as the Onyx formula, and so expect a wide range of trims and quirks that cause it to be capable off- and on-road.

The front and back end components of this vehicle have been improved, offering better approach and departure angles. It also has an enhanced ride height, an inch higher than the Onyx. The front skid plate of the automobile is standard, and larger available as an option.

The characteristics include wide wheel arches and mild all-terrain tires. These are pretty aggressive and suitable to pass through the roughest roads. Called the Geolander A/T, the tires are perfect for on and off-road. It is also quiet when compared to others that give off a constant, droning sound while you drive.

Plus, the dual function X mode is upgraded. When it comes to the colour, choose a wide range of these shades when purchasing it, but the geyser blue is popular among enthusiasts.

Other interesting parts of the exterior are the anodized copper finish and tow hook cover areas, which are removable. You can also connect an eye hook at this part to recover the vehicle. With ease of use, it is comfortable to connect and disconnect when you’re on rough roads.

You will see the same copper finish on the roof racks of this automobile. The roof rack is a new ladder kind and it supports up to 700 pounds of static load, so when you go driving, you can set up a rooftop tent for a better experience.

At the front of the car, you have standard headlights and LED fog lights. There is a big black sticker on the hood, and although it seems like it’s only meant to add to the structure, it is meant to reduce the glare when under the sun.

The Outback Wilderness engine is the same as the Onyx. It uses a 2.4-litre turbocharged boxer 4, and it is attached to a high torque CVT. With about 260 worth of horsepower and 277 pound-feet of torque, the standard Subaru symmetrical all-wheel-drive system adds enhanced capabilities.

The mileage is set at 22 for the city and 26 for the highway, and this is different from the Onyx. As for its towing capacity, it’s set at 3500 pounds. 

There is a small light that comes on when you open the trunk in the rear, and it illuminates the work area, so you can see when night falls while driving. Apart from this, the trunk is pretty what you’d expect from a Subaru off-roading vehicle. Its seatback is more rugged and there are easy-release poles that are used to push the backseats down. Under the trunk, you will find a spare tire that is the same as the all-terrain on the auto.

The second row is the same as the Onyx but only has a slightly different seat design. This is the same as the front row. You will see mud mats on the floors with the Wilderness logo, as well as on the redesigned front seats. 

From the driver’s perspective, there are a few changes in terms of technical quirks that differentiate this from the Onyx. It is similar to what the seats at the front and back have. The interior is designed to be easy to maintain and clean.

The automobile has a massive touch screen with the latest Subaru software that gives it new fittings like the auto start/stop on the home screen. You can select an option for car information, and look out for better statistics that makes off-roading more enjoyable.

If you want it to go over 25 miles per hour, select the X mode with the Deep Snow/Mud setting. This allows it to go as fast as you want, better than what the Onyx has to offer.

The Outback Wilderness remains engaged even after 25 miles per hour, so if you’re going on and off-road as you drive, you don’t have to constantly switch forth and back the X mode. It stays engaged, keeps you driving safe and allows you to enjoy the trip.

Who is the Outback Wilderness Made For?

For one, it is ideal for anyone who is looking for a full experience. If you live in areas where the roads are bad or you spend a lot of time on rough terrains, this is an ideal choice.

It’s also great for anyone who does not want to bother with aftermarket adjustments after buying it. Since it is fully equipped with everything you need on and off-road, you can enjoy it at once. You also can’t purchase an Onyx and turn it into a Wilderness, because Subaru already prepared and calibrated the latter accurately to fit rough terrain standards.

The pricing of this car is not known yet, but it is expected to be in its mid-40k.

Comparison with other Off-road Models

For one, we have the Honda Passport which is well-known for the leading all-wheel-drive that makes it ideal for rugged use. But Subaru went further in comparison, as the Passport has a ground clearance of 8.1 inches. And the tires don’t offer a lot to look out for. 

On the other hand, the Honda has a slightly better approach and departure angle. In terms of cargo, the Honda has over a hundred cubic feet of space, but it is limited when it comes to trail-specific features.

The Wilderness is a good comparison to the Cherokee Trailhawk from Jeep. The latter comes with all-terrain tires, a dual-range gearbox, a lockable centre and the Selec-Terrain feature from Jeep. It also has a towing capacity of up to 4,500 pounds, and a class-leading approach and departure angle. 

It is well-known as a top choice for off-roading with its V6 engine and nine-speed automatic. But it’s a bit smaller and has a less impressive ground clearance. 

It is also suitable to compare the Wilderness to the Toyota 4Runner TRD, and they are similar in many ways. The 4Runner has 9.6 inches in terms of ground clearance, while the former has 9.5 inches. The two have impressive off-road enhancements, while the 4Runner has a low range gearbox and front-locking differentials.

The 4Runner is well-known as a flexible choice for enthusiasts, but the Outback is more equipped in different areas. It has a better fuel economy and is more comfortable, whether on or off-road.

Last Thoughts

Subaru did a brilliant job with the Wilderness. They managed to add improvements on the already great features while retaining some of what made the Outback a success in the first place. Hopefully, we will be able to think the same way when the manufacturers release other Wilderness vehicles.

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Pavlo Prannyk
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