Skip to main content

Your 3 Smart SUV-Alternative Models Now - Subaru Outback Is Hard To Beat

Is the 2022 Subaru Outback a wagon or is it a midsize SUV? See why Consumer Reports says it’s the best SUV-alternative pick for SUV shoppers.

The 2022 Outback is a vehicle that is hard to put in a vehicle category because it does so many things well. It's why the all-wheel-drive model is picked as one of the best SUV-alternative vehicles by Consumer Reports (by subscription). It's ironic; the "SUV-alternative" Outback is rated the number one of thirteen Midsize sport-utility vehicles by CR.

The three best Smart SUV Alternatives

CR picks the 2022 Outback as the best Wagon, the Honda Ridgeline as the best Pickup truck, and the Toyota Sienna as the best Minivan. All three are rated high in functionality, top safety scores, reliability, roads tests, and fuel mileage.

2022 Subaru Outback, Outback Wilderness, features, specs, pricing

Why is the Outback your best pick?

Consumer Reports says, "The Outback wagon stacks up quite well against many small and midsized SUVs. Standard all-wheel drive, high ground clearance, and integrated roof-rack bars give it crossover credentials. It's lower than a comparable SUV, making it easier to use the roof rack, and a bicycle easily fits inside with the rear seat folded, and ride quality is impressive."

CR also says, "The base engine gets good fuel economy, but the optional 260 horsepower turbocharged four-cylinder engine is quiet and punchy, delivering 24 mpg overall."

2022 Subaru Outback, Outback Wilderness, features, specs, pricing

The 2022 Subaru Outback wagon/midsize SUV is popular because the vehicle offers shoppers high value. The Outback provides excellent fuel mileage, standard all-wheel-drive, the highest safety crash scores, utility, and cargo-carrying ability, and is affordable.

Because the Outback has a longer wheelbase (four inches longer than the Forester), the Wagon offers a smoother ride because the vehicle's corners cover a larger area. Therefore, bumps are less noticeable.

2022 Subaru Outback, Outback Wilderness, features, specs, pricing

Do you need rugged?

Subaru of America just ramped up the off-road chops of the 2022 Outback. The 2022 Outback Wilderness takes the Wagon to a new level of off-pavement capability. You can read the complete report here.

What is the price of the 2022 Subaru Outback?

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 is the fuel mileage of the 2022 Outback?

The EPA fuel mileage rating of the 2022 Outback XT 2.4-liter turbo is 23/30 city/highway mpg and 26 combined mpg. The estimated fuel economy of the standard 2.5-liter engine is 26/33 mpg city/highway and 29 combined mpg.

The EPA says the new 2022 Outback Wilderness gets an estimated 22/26 city/highway mpg and 24 combined mpg. The 2021 Outback XT with the 2.4-liter turbocharged engine gets an EPA estimated 23/30 city/highway mpg and 26 combined mpg.

The 2022 Subaru Outback is a wagon but offers the utility and cargo-carrying ability of an SUV. Consumers who buy the Outback like its car-like ride not found in a typical SUV. Consumer Reports rates it the best in the category.

You Might Also Like: The All-New 2023 Subaru Solterra EV Breaks Cover - Complete Details And Images

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


peter scott (not verified)    November 12, 2021 - 1:06AM

These are great points. I’ve never been in favor of buying a brand Used car Engine even though the new smell is so tempting.
The points you bring up about 25,000 miles are interesting.
Hopefully the previous owners took good care of it and maintained the car well.