I’m always excited to get behind the wheel of a Subaru SUV. This week, I bring you the all-new 2022 Subaru Forester Wilderness Edition.
Let’s talk about what is new for this model. It has an upgraded suspension, a front view monitor, increased ground clearance, and a new grill. It also has some really cool fog lights, and a flat black strip on the hood to cut down on glare when you are off-roading.
Under the hood you’ll find the 2.5-liter Boxer 4-cylinder engine, putting out 182-horses and 176 pound-feet of torque. There is also an upgraded Continuously Variable Transmission that you can shift from paddles on the steering wheel, and it simulates actual shifting, and actually feels like a regular transmission.
The Wilderness package is new to the Forester this year and is the top-of-the-line model. You’ll notice Wilderness emblems on the fenders, tailgate, and the headrests, and bronze accents are abundant on the exterior and interior.
As you enter the cabin, you think this Forester has leather seats, but it is actually a StarTex material that is soft to the touch and completely washable. I love the aluminum pedals, including the dead pedal.
The dash is bright and colorful and there is a driver info readout in the middle. This is operated from the steering wheel, which is quite busy with a lot of buttons including radio controls and cruise control among other things.
On the center console you’ll find the X-MODE settings for those who want to test the amazing symmetrical all-wheel drive system off the road. You can also activate the automatic vehicle hold, which allows you to take your foot off the brake when you come to a stop.
The heart of the operations is the Starlink system, which is an easy-to-use 8-inch touchscreen. This is where you operate the Bluetooth, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, the Harman Kardon sound system including HD radio, a CD player and Sirius XM. You get real-time info and you can add your own apps if you wish.
Above that is another driver info center operated from the steering wheel. You can choose from different screens featuring things like time & temp, fuel economy data, and the local forecast.
Also, from the steering wheel you can activate the Si drive for enhanced throttle control and a sharper driver experience and it really makes a difference.
Around the rearview mirror you’ll find the EyeSight Safety System, something I talk about on the radio all the time because to me, it is the best one out there. You can’t see if from inside, but outside you see two cameras mounted high on the windshield.
The cameras monitor traffic movement, optimizes adaptive cruise control, and warns you when you're swaying outside your lane. The Automatic Pre-Collision Braking feature can even apply full braking force and bring you to a complete stop in emergency situations.
Back seat leg and headroom are surprisingly good and there are air conditioner vents, a fold down armrest, and two USB ports.
Cargo area is larger than I expected and with the second-row seats down, you get almost 70-cubic feet of cargo space.
Notable standard features include LED headlights and fog lights, rear camera with rear automatic braking, Wi-FI, pushbutton start, a large power moon roof, and keyless entry. It has start/stop that can be disabled.
Safety-wise, besides the EyeSight system, you get blind-spot detection with lane change assist, and rear cross-traffic alert.
Ride and Drive
The ride and drive are spectacular and the all-around visibility is great. With 8.7-inches of ground clearance, the Forester is a serious off-roader as well as a joyful daily driver. Acceleration is lacking a little for me, but it is rated to tow 3,000 pounds.
Fuel economy is great at 25 city and 28 highway, and total MSRP was surprisingly low by today’s standards at $34,165.
- What I Liked Most: The value proposition, and capability of this Subaru.
- What I would change: Make an electric liftgate standard equipment
- MSRP: Base price: $32,820, as equipped: $34,165.
- Official Color: Magnetite Grey Metallic.
- Fuel Economy: 25 city/28 highway/26 combined.
- Odometer reading when tested: 4,900 miles.
- Weight: 3,643-pound curb weight, 4,891 GVWR.
- Spare Tire: Full-sized spare with matching wheel.
- Length-Width-Height: 182.7” long/72” wide/69” high.
- Fuel Tank Capacity: 16.6 gallons with the filler on the passenger side.
- Towing Capacity: 3,000 pounds.
- 2022 Subaru Forester Wilderness in a few words: A smart, capable, and above all safe SUV that is an outstanding value.
- Warranty: 3-year/36,000-mile bumper-to-bumper, 4-year/50,000 mile power train warranty with roadside assistance, 2-years/24,000 miles of free maintenance.
- Final Assembly Location: Lafayette, Indiana.
- Manufacturer's website: Subaru