Skip to main content

The New Subaru Forester Wilderness Is Missing A Key Feature

This fall, the 2022 Subaru Forester Wilderness arrives in North America, but it’s missing one crucial feature. See what Canada gets, but it’s not offered on U.S. models.


The new 2022 Subaru Forester Wilderness is only sold in North America for U.S. and Canadian customers. But Canada gets a critical feature that you won’t see on U.S. models. The Wilderness trim in Canada includes heated front seats with the standard all-weather package; the U.S. models only get heated front seats, heated exterior mirrors, and windshield wiper de-icer.

Subaru Canada says, “Contrast copper stitching on the seats, and heated leather steering wheel matches the exterior accents as well as copper details found inside on the shifter, steering wheel, and gauge meter rings.”

2022 Subaru Forester, 2022 Subaru Forester Wilderness, features, specs

The all-new rugged 2022 Forester Wilderness trim is built in Gunma, Japan, for North American customers. The two rugged models are identical, except the Canadian Forester Wilderness comes standard with a heated steering wheel.

The 2022 Forester Wilderness sold in the U.S. comes with a single options package including Subaru Starlink, an 8.0-inch multimedia navigation system, Harman Kardon premium sound, and a rear power gate. The option package has a retail price of $1,850. A heated steering wheel is not an option.

2022 Subaru Forester, 2022 Subaru Forester Wilderness, features, specs

The Forester Wilderness won’t arrive until this fall, and customers in the northern U.S. would appreciate the added warmth of having the heat on their hands. U.S. outdoor enthusiasts will have to wear gloves when the temperature drops below freezing in the Northeast, Rocky Mountains, and the Northwest.

Subaru pulled a similar stunt when they launched the 2022 Outback Wilderness. The Canadian Outback Wilderness also came standard with a heated steering wheel, and U.S. customers were left out.

The new 2022 Forester Wilderness was inspired by customers who are already modifying their vehicles. But customers who want a heated wheel will have to alter their new outdoor model if they live in the U.S. market.

We are surprised that U.S. customers get left out again. Subaru of America sells around ten times more vehicles than Subaru Canada, and Subaru Corporation priorities its U.S. customers. Yasushi Enami, chairman, president, and CEO of Subaru Canada, must have different influences in Japan to get the additional feature on his Forester Wilderness models.

What is the price of the 2022 Subaru Forester Wilderness?

The U.S. specification 2022 Subaru Forester Wilderness is priced at $33,945, including destination and delivery fees. There’s a slim chance Subaru Corporation will ship a Canadian spec Wilderness trim to U.S. customers.

You Might Also Like: The Complete 2022 Subaru Forester Model Guide - Which Trim Is Best

Denis Flierl has invested over 30 years in the automotive industry in a consulting role working with every major car brand. He is an accredited member of the Rocky Mountain Automotive Press. Check out Subaru Report where he covers all of the Japanese automaker's models. More stories can be found on the Torque News Subaru page. Follow Denis on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

Subaru Report - We’ve got you covered! Check back tomorrow for more unique, informative SUBARU news, reviews, and previews you can trust.

Leave your comments below, share the article with friends and tweet it out to your followers!

Photo credit: Subaru USA


Frank (not verified)    September 9, 2021 - 12:13AM

Would love the heated steering wheel on all Wilderness and Onyx trims here in Upstate NY.

Martin R. Marsola (not verified)    September 9, 2021 - 5:51AM

Not a big deal. Crossing the border to have this as a standard feature is laughable. I believe US buyers will not reconsider this model for a small difference in this model. Really childish!

Robert EU (not verified)    September 9, 2021 - 6:26AM

Be glad to have version with engines and extra trim. European ones don't accelerate with their tiny little toy engines.

Loco Raindrops (not verified)    September 9, 2021 - 11:04AM

Well on the Canadian Outdoor trim of the Crosstrek for instance you can get heated steering wheel but not a sunroof so nothing unusual as far as how Subaru handles these models.

You can remote start the vehicle with the heater on in cold weather so how useful is a heated steering wheel? I live in the northeast and have owned many vehicles including Subies. I also drove truck commercially a bit and not once did I ever wish I had a heated steering wheel lol.

Personally I think a heated steering wheel is about as useful as the one option people cry about which is power seats.

Once you set the seat where you want it how often do you change the position for power seats to become a need and not a want?

Rarely if you are the only driver and even if you are not it is much quicker to adjust the seat with a manual adjustment than one with a power option.

Same with power lift gates. They are great until you get caught in a downpour or whiteout then you realize how slow they are.

Just more stupid stuff that isn't a necessity to go wrong imho.

DukeSparrow (not verified)    September 9, 2021 - 3:11PM

This article is wrong about the Harmon Karon stereo upgrade. I just bought a wilderness with the optional upgrades and premium sound package is not included nor offered. I am in the process of getting aftermarket speakers installed. Prospective buyers should be aware that upgraded sound is not available from the factory

Eric (not verified)    September 9, 2021 - 4:39PM

I wish Subaru offered a diesel version with a manual transmission, actual towing capacity, full under guards, dual zone AC and heater, and other features to make it more off-roady, and edit out the electronics, video game dash, and power everything. "Advenrure" doesn't conger up luxury electronics for kids to play whilr mom is in getter her bikini wax.

Rhett (not verified)    September 10, 2021 - 8:16AM

Lost interest in the current Forester as there is no turbo. Opened an eye for it when the outback wilderness got the 2.4 but now ai have hit the snooze button again. The Forester may never achieve its potential again :-(