Life has a lot of excitement to offer, especially when you live in the Wakefield, Reading, or Danvers, MA, area. Whether it's heading over to Whipple Hill for a day spent immersed in nature or creating your own adventure on the back roads, there's a lot to experience and explore.

To take advantage of all there is to see, you'll need a good off-roading vehicle. Two exceptional off-road SUV vehicles are the 2022 Subaru Forester and the 2022 Subaru Outback.

To help you learn more about these vehicles, we at Ira Subaru have created this Subaru Forester vs. Outback off-road capabilities guide. In this guide, we'll discuss the top features that can help you go off the beaten path.

Curious to learn more? If so, keep reading or skip ahead to browse our Forester and Outback inventory right here!

Subaru Forester vs Outback Quick Facts



  • Symmetrical All-Wheel Drive (AWD)
  • 8.7 inches of ground clearance
  • 2.5L 4-cylinder engine
  • 182 horsepower and 176 lb-ft of torque
  • EPA-estimated 26 city/33 highway MPG*
  • X-MODE®, optional
  • Symmetrical All-Wheel Drive (AWD)
  • 8.7 inches of ground clearance
  • 2.5L 4-cylinder engine
  • 182 horsepower and 176 lb-ft of torque
  • EPA-estimated 26 city/33 highway MPG*
  • X-MODE®

Subaru Forester vs Outback Off-Road Capabilities: Symmetrical All-Wheel Drive

When you're searching for an off-road vehicle, the first thing you'll need is the ability to conquer any terrain with ease. Thankfully, both the 2022 Subaru Forester and the 2022 Subaru Outback come standard with Symmetrical All-Wheel Drive (AWD).

This system is designed for optimal balance and maximum traction in various weather and road conditions.

It lies along the center line of the vehicle, balancing power and weight distribution between the two sides to create stability among the four wheels. This helps deliver the necessary power during unfavorable conditions, allowing you to maintain proper grip on nearly any terrain.

Since it continuously keeps power routed to all four wheels, you'll have a great grip in the:

  • Snow
  • Rain
  • Rough terrain

That means, whether you're headed on an off-road adventure or  trucking through snow or rain, you can still feel confident in your vehicle's ability to get from Point A to Point B while maintaining proper wheel grip in even the harshest conditions.

Plus, with the balanced layout, you'll maintain a solid connection with the road as well as have an engaged and responsive drive.

Enhanced Traction With Subaru X-MODE®

For serious off-roading, consider enhancing your Subaru's AWD capabilities with the X-MODE® system. This feature further optimizes the Subaru Symmetrical All-Wheel Drive system for all-out traction on slippery surfaces.

It does so by increasing the all-wheel drive system engagement to help reduce wheel spin. This system also incorporates Hill Descent Control for extra stability when driving down steeper grades.

X-MODE® and Hill Descent Control are two features offered on both the Forester and the Outback. However, these features are standard only with the Outback. X-MODE® and Hill Descent Control are available features with higher trim levels of the Forester.

Subaru Forester vs Outback Off-Roading Capabilities: Ground Clearance

During your off-roading travels, you may encounter objects, like sticks and rocks, along your path. Instead of turning back and calling it a day, go ahead and power over these obstacles as though they're nothing more than an anthill.

In order to do this, you'll need to ensure there's enough ground clearance for you to climb safely over these obstacles without doing damage to the underside of your SUV.

Both the 2022 Forester and the Outback make climbing over objects a breeze. That's because both SUVs come with an 8.7-inch ground clearance.

This extra space between your Subaru SUV and the ground makes it possible to travel on some bumpy terrain without doing damage to the underside of your vehicle-while still making it easy to get in and out of your SUV.

Subaru Forester vs Outback Off-Roading Capabilities: Vehicle Dynamics Control

 Another feature that comes standard with both the Subaru Forester and the Subaru Outback to provide the best traction possible during your off-roading adventures is Vehicle Dynamics Control (VDC). This feature works with Active Torque Vectoring to provide sharper and more stable handling.

Features of VDC include:

  • Monitors wheel speed, steering angle, and brake pressure
  • Senses steering and brake interrupts
  • Applies necessary brake pressure and/or reduces engine torque
  • Helps you stay on course whether you're on- or off-road

Subaru Forester vs Outback Off-Roading Capabilities: Performance Specs

Finally, these vehicles' impressive off-roading capabilities stem from their powerful engine options.

Subaru Forester vs Outback Engine Specs








182 HP

182 HP


176 lb-ft

176 lb-ft

As you can see, you're in for an equally thrilling commute whether 

you drive the Forester or the 2022 Outback thanks to their equally powerful performance capabilities. These vehicles even go hand in hand in terms of fuel efficiency since both models have an EPA-estimated 26 city/33 highway MPG.*

That way, you can spend hours traveling and off-roading before needing to stop to refuel.

The main difference between the performance capabilities of the Forester and the Outback is in their towing capacities.

The Forester has a maximum towing capacity of 3,000 pounds when properly equipped. The Outback, on the other hand, has a maximum towing capacity of 3,500 pounds when properly equipped, making it easier to bring your outdoor toys-like a small boat or camping trailer-along for your next off-roading adventure.

Test the Off-Road Capabilities of the Forester & Outback Today!

When you're ready to explore every inch of Wakefield, Reading, and Danvers, Massachusetts, you'll need an SUV that's up for any challenge you throw its way. That's where the off-roading capabilities of the 2022 Subaru Forester and the Outback come into play.

After reading through our Subaru Forester vs. Outback off-roading capabilities guide, you can see both these SUVs offer exceptional traction and off-roading features to ensure you'll maintain proper grip on nearly any surface.

With that being said, either Subaru SUV is perfect for your off-roading adventures.

To help you get a better feel for each SUV to decide which one offers all the features you want and need, we invite you to visit our dealership. Here, you can get an up-close look, then take each one for a spin. Contact us at Ira Subaru to schedule your test drive today!

* EPA fuel economy estimates. Actual mileage will vary with driving conditions and your vehicle's condition.

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Directions Danvers, MA 01923

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