April 9, 2021 - 8:00 am
Subaru of America has introduced the most rugged and capable Outback in the auto manufacturer’s history: the 2022 Subaru Outback Wilderness.
The SUV’s off-road performance and capability are greatly increased with help of exclusive new features.
Performance and capability
The 2022 Outback Wilderness boasts a class-leading 9.5-inch ground clearance, a nearly 1-inch increase over the standard model. The suspension has been tuned for improved stability on rough terrain while keeping ride comfort and handling performance on the open road. The front and rear shock absorbers and springs were increased in length to provide more ground clearance and suspension travel.
The increased ground clearance, with redesigned front and rear bumpers, contributes to the vehicle’s ability to navigate rough or uneven terrain.
A revised rear differential with a final drive ratio of 4.44:1 was fitted, and the Lineartronic CVT was modified to achieve an equivalent final drive ratio at the front wheels. The combination improves available low-end torque at the wheels, resulting in a superior ability to climb grades up to 40 percent on a gravel surface. The addition of a pressure sensor improves control accuracy at low speeds.
Standard dual-function X-Mode includes Snow/Dirt and Deep Snow/Mud modes. Exclusive to Outback Wilderness, a new 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.
The Outback Wilderness comes equipped with Yokohama Geolandar all-terrain tires for better performance on muddy or gravel roads. Mounted on exclusive 17-inch alloy wheels in matte black finish, the tires are embossed with raised white letters: an homage to the original Outback. A standard full-size tire is stored under the cargo area, giving owners confidence while on the trails.
With the increased off-road capability, the Outback Wilderness delivers the optimal blend of SUV capability and car-like ride and handling that the legendary SUV is known for with help from standard features including active torque vectoring and vehicle dynamics control. Thoughtful upgrades, such as a front-view monitor, LED rear gate light and hands-free power rear gate improve convenience on the trail.
The Outback Wilderness is paired with a Lineartronic CVT featuring an 8-speed manual mode function with steering wheel paddle shifters. The standard 2.4-liter, turbocharged Boxer engine delivers robust all-around performance with 260 horsepower at 5,600 rpm and 277 pound-feet of torque at 2,000 rpm. The 2.4-liter turbo achieves an EPA-rated 22 city/26 highway and has a 3,500-pound towing capacity.
To visually communicate the more capable off-road performance, the 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 gate.
High contrast accents in an anodized copper-finish throughout the exterior signal useful contact points such as tow hook anchor points and roof rail tie-down points. The Outback Wilderness also possesses a more utilitarian fixed ladder-type roof rack system, with a static load limit of 700 pounds, allowing adventurers to use a roof-top tent on the trail. The ladder-type roof rails add flexibility to fit a wider variety of roof racking accessories and contribute to the adventurous spirit.
The new Outback trim also debuts its exclusive exterior color: Geyser Blue, a color that is inspired by Subaru’s rally heritage and the scenery only found in the U.S. national parks.
On the inside, the Outback Wilderness features a comfortable and durable interior perfect for the road or on the trail. The seats are wrapped Subaru StarTex water-repellant material that includes the Subaru Wilderness logo embossed in the headrests. A copper-colored contrast stitch weaves its way throughout the interior, complementing the anodized copper-finish accents on the steering wheel, shifter assembly and meter rings.
The headliner uses a darker color and gunmetal gray replaces the standard chrome touchpoints such as ventilation grilles and cupholders. Brushed aluminum pedals give a sporty look. Standard all-weather floor mats also display the Subaru Wilderness logo.
In the cargo area, the rear seatback is wrapped in a waterproof material, and a waterproof rear cargo tray protects the load floor. As a final point of flair, the Subaru Wilderness logo appears in the meter display during vehicle start up.
Subaru in-vehicle technology
Subaru Starlink in-vehicle technology offers an integrated cockpit experience by allowing the driver to control entertainment and vehicle settings through a large touch-screen display. The Outback Wilderness comes standard with the Starlink 11.6-inch multimedia plus system offering direct touch controls for multimedia, HVAC, X-Mode and vehicle settings.
The multimedia system includes smartphone integration with Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, Bluetooth hands-free phone and audio streaming connectivity. The system also comes standard with AM/FM stereo; rear vision camera; SiriusXM all access radio (four-month free subscription) and SiriusXM Travel Link (three-year free subscription); HD Radio and over-the-air updates.
The top-of-the-line 11.6-inch multimedia with navigation is available as part of an option package that also includes a power moonroof and reverse automatic braking. Exclusive to Outback Wilderness, the X-Mode display features a new roll-angle indicator to help the driver navigate off-road terrain.
Expanded accessory catalog
With the wide variety of roof-racking and other accessory parts available to Subaru owners, new accessories have been added for the Outback Wilderness. They include aluminum or steel skid plates for the engine, transmission and fuel tank. A rear differential protector is also available.
Pricing for the 2022 Outback Wilderness will be announced this year.