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2022 Subaru Outback Wilderness Packs Serious-er Off-Road Punch

A turbo flat-four, 9.5 inches of clearance, and a mean-looking face. The Outback just got even more adventurous. Already a capable off-roader, the Subaru Outback is the popular choice for the outdoorsy types. With the new Wilderness trim, the 2022 Subaru Outback gets a little more serious with increased off-roading chops. For starters, the Wilderness sits 9.5 inches off the ground, almost an inch higher than the regular Outback, and comes with a set of Yokohama Geolanders adorning new all-black 17-inch wheels. 

It also comes with the 2.4-liter turbo flat-four as standard which makes 260 hp and 277 lb-ft of peak torque. Though it comes with a CVT gearbox, Subaru has tweaked the final drive ratio to 4.44:1 to match it to the rear differential. As a result, the Wilderness delivers better low-down torque, an essential attribute for any off-roader. It also comes with X-Mode as standard which has been reworked too, and can now automatically switch from low-speed managed driving to speeds of over 25 mph without interruptions in power. 

As a result of all that re-engineering, the Wilderness can scale a 40 percent grade gravel incline without breaking a sweat.

The Wilderness is aesthetically distinct from the run-of-the-mill Outback as well. The Blue Geyser paint job with the black graphics set the new trim apart. An all-black and rugged-looking front bumper with hexagonal fog lamps adds character and a mean streak to the front fascia. The rear all-black bumper treatment does the same. A more pronounced set of wheel arches accentuate the already apparent ruggedness of the Wilderness. But it’s not all for show. Subaru has also fit ladder-type roof rails that can support a roof tent as per customers’ requests. The rails can hold up to 700 lb of static weight. Lastly, you will find anodized copper accents all around the car. While some are decorative, some mark tow hook anchors and roof rail tie downs.

The anodized treatment continues to the interior. The steering wheel and the gear lever both get the copper treatment. Apart from that, the cabin is almost identical to the standard Outback. In the center of the dash sits the 11.6-inch touchscreen, which is standard and comes with Android Auto and Apple CarPlay. Navigation, a powered moonroof and reverse auto emergency braking are all part of an optional package. It does however get water-repellent StarTex seats front and back, another testament to the Wilderness’ off-roading inclinations. Even the back of the rear bench comes with the water-repellent upholstery to provide a easy-clean loading bay. As for safety, EyeSight is standard and considering that this will be the top trim, it will come with most safety and driver assistance systems as standard.

Prices remain elusive and will be revealed closer to the launch date later in the year. Considering the kit and the standard 2.4-liter turbo engine, expect prices to be well north of $40,000.

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