With a rally pedigree a mile long, Subaru is no stranger to off-road performance. Yet despite all those podium finishes, Subaru doesn’t have as big of an imprint in the off-roading space as other 4×4 heavyweights like Jeep and Toyota.
But with the rise in popularity for activities like overlanding, many folks are looking for an all-around rig that can handle rough terrain with the same ease as the interstate—while having plenty of functional storage space for both camping trips and soccer tournaments alike.
So Subaru’s giving its bread-and-butter Outback SUV a rugged special edition in 2022: the Outback Wilderness.
For starters, the 2022 Outback Wilderness gets almost a full extra inch of ride height thanks to longer springs and shocks, for a class-leading 9.5 inch overall ground clearance—which is really, really close to a base Wrangler’s 9.7 inches. That helps improve the Outback Wilderness’ approach and departure angles to 20.0 and 23.6 degrees respectively.
While the Wilderness edition retains the 260 horsepower 2.4L turbo four from the current Outback, it does get a revised CVT that improves low-end torque. Combined with 4.44:1 rear gearing, it allows the Outback Wilderness to climb gravel grades of up to 40 percent. It also boasts a 3,500-pound tow rating.
Outside, the Outback Wilderness wears a revised grille, distinct bumpers front and rear, and LED fog lights. It also carries a more robust fixed ladder-type roof rack. For trail protection, the new Outback Wilderness model has a standard front skid plate, and optional engine, transmission, and fuel tank skid plates are available through an expanded Subaru accessory catalog. Inside you’ll find plenty of water- and abrasion-resistant materials too.
Pricing for the 2022 Subaru Outback Wilderness will be announced later this year.