Subaru threw a hissy fit when word of their Wilderness sub-brand leaked out months ago, but the company has now confirmed their plans to dealers.
According to Automotive News, the sub-brand was announced at last week’s National Automobile Dealers Association meeting and will first make an appearance on the 2022 Forester and Outback.
Details are limited, but the president of Sommer’s Subaru in Mequon, Wisconsin told the publication “The Wilderness is going to give additional capabilities in those car lines, additional style and the look of off-roading to a greater degree than we have right now.” Wally Sommer went on to say the Outback Wilderness will be introduced this spring or summer, while the Forester Wilderness will follow sometime later.
Little is known about them, but we can expect a more rugged appearance, additional ground clearance and meatier tires. The models should also have special badging and possibly some interior modifications.
The Wilderness sub-brand is designed to appeal to customers looking for something more capable than the company’s mainstream models. While it remains to be seen how hardcore they will be, Sommer said “people are going to be very pleased with the product when they see it.”
Full details should be announced later this year but, in the meantime, we’ll remind you the Outback is offered with a naturally aspirated 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine that produces 182 hp (136 kW / 185 PS) and 176 lb-ft (239 Nm) of torque. The wagon can also be outfitted with a turbocharged 2.4-liter developing 260 hp (194 kW / 264 PS) and 277 lb-ft (376 Nm) of torque.
The Forester, on the other hand, is available exclusively with the aforementioned 2.5-liter engine.