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New Subaru Outback Can't Get Off The Hairy Rollercoaster Ride

The new car shortage has been the reason for an up-and-down ride for Subaru and its top-selling models. The rollercoaster ride continues.


It’s been a roller coaster ride for Subaru of America and its top-selling all-wheel-drive SUVs. The new 2022 Subaru Outback was the top-selling model in the all-wheel-drive lineup, but the hot Subaru Crosstrek subcompact SUV recently overtook the midsize SUV.

Subaru of America reported the Outback had March sales of 13,808 and nudged out the 2022 Crosstrek with 13,460 models delivered to customers. But Crosstrek is the overall leader in the lineup for the first three months of 2022 with 37,463 sales passing the Outback with 32,972 year to date. It’s the first time Crosstrek has outsold both Forester and Outback.

2022 Subaru Outback, features, specs, pricing
photo credit: Maita Subaru

The Outback is down 20.6 percent for the year, while Crosstrek is the only SUV in positive figures, up 6.5 percent in 2022. The up-and-down ride is due to the ongoing microchip shortage and supply chain issues. If not for the lingering problems, Subaru of America would likely be reporting record sales of the Outback.

Subaru launched the all-new rugged 2022 Outback Wilderness trim level for outdoor enthusiasts and those with active lifestyles. The Wilderness sub-brand has been a big hit with customers. Subaru says customers are willing to wait for the longest to get the new outdoor-themed models.

2022 Subaru Outback, features, specs, pricing

The 2022 Subaru Outback Wilderness is a big hit with a young demographic and a big reason why the Outback is one of the hottest SUVs. Last fall, the Outback tied with the top-selling Toyota RAV4 as the fastest-selling new car in the most states (5). The Outback midsize SUV sold the fastest in Kentucky (5.5 days), Maryland (5.7 days), Ohio (6.3 days), Alabama (8.1 days), and Minnesota (15.6 days).

What sets the Wilderness trim apart from the standard model are 9.5 inches of ground clearance, an off-road-tuned suspension, Yokohama Geolandar all-terrain tires, an aluminum engine skid plate, and a steel rear differential skid plate. The upgrades allow the Wilderness model to trek further and tow more.

What is the price of the 2022 Subaru Outback Wilderness?

The 2022 Outback comes in eight trim levels; the base trim is priced from $27,845, Premium ($30,270), Limited ($34,720), Touring ($38,620), Onyx Edition XT ($36,270), new for 2022, Outback Wilderness ($38,120), Limited XT ($39,120), and Touring XT ($41,070). Pricing includes $1,125 destination and delivery fees.

What’s next for the Outback?

For the 2023 Subaru Outback model change, the midsize SUV is due for a refresh or “big model change” (BMC) in the fourth year of its product cycle. It’s when Subaru gives its core models a refresh with upgrades to the exterior and interior.

The 2023 Outback should get a new front fascia (headlights, bumper, hexagon grille) and unique interior upgrades with fabric changes inside and new exterior colors. The complete remodel from the ground up will come in 2024 for the midsize SUV. Check out the full Outback report below.

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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.

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Photo credit: Subaru USA