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Test Drive Gallery: 2022 Subaru Ascent Onyx Edition

2022 Subaru Ascent Onyx Edition
2022 Subaru Ascent Onyx Edition in Autumn Green Metallic

2022 Subaru Ascent Onyx Edition

Class: Midsize Crossover SUV

Miles driven: 153

Fuel used: 7.8 gallons

CG Report Card
Room and ComfortB
Power and PerformanceB
Fit and FinishB+
Fuel EconomyB-
Report-card grades are derived from a consensus of test-driver evaluations. All grades are versus other vehicles in the same class. Value grade is for specific trim level evaluated, and may not reflect Consumer Guide's impressions of the entire model lineup.
Big & Tall Comfort
Big GuyA
Tall GuyA
Big & Tall comfort ratings are for front seats only. "Big" rating based on male tester weighing approximately 350 pounds, "Tall" rating based on 6'6"-tall male tester.
Engine Specs260-hp 2.4-liter
Engine TypeTurbo 4-cyl
Transmission CVT automatic
Drive WheelsAWD

Real-world fuel economy: 19.4 mpg

Driving mix: 70% city, 30% highway

EPA-estimated fuel economy: 20/26/22 (mpg city/highway/combined)

Base price: $37,995 (not including $1125 destination charge)

Options on test vehicle: Option Package ($2200) 

Price as tested: $41,320


Quick Hits

The great: Generous list of standard comfort and convenience features; comfortable ride

The good: Nicely trimmed interior, competitive pricing; good visibility all-around

The not so good: Middling acceleration; transmission behavior is sometimes odd and non-linear; second- and third-row space isn’t quite as good as class-leading rivals’

More Ascent price and availability information


CG Says:

Blacked-out body trim and dark-finish wheels continue to be all the rage these days across the new-vehicle spectrum, and Subaru is getting into the act in a bigger way for 2022. The Ascent midsize SUV—the biggest vehicle in Subaru’s lineup—adds a specially trimmed Onyx Edition model that gets exclusive black-finish exterior trim elements and unique interior-trim features.

The Onyx Edition name and concept are borrowed from the roster of Subaru’s popular Outback SUV-flavored midsize wagon. And like its Outback sibling, the Ascent Onyx Edition slots right into the middle of its respective model lineup, between the Ascent’s Premium and Limited trim levels.

The specific exterior trim touches of the Onyx Edition consist of a black finish on the grille, exterior badges and trim, headlight bezels, and 20-inch aluminum alloy wheels; the exterior rearview mirrors and roof spoiler get a “black silica” finish. The interior is outfitted with Subaru’s StarTex water-repellant upholstery (some of our editors have complained that the StarTex material doesn’t “breathe” very well and can get uncomfortably warm on hot days), along with black/simulated carbon-fiber trim elements and carpeted floor mats with the Onyx logo.

Key standard comfort and convenience features of the Onyx Edition include an 8-way power driver’s seat, keyless access with push-button starting, power rear liftgate, and a heated steering wheel (in addition to the heated front seats that come standard on Premium and above models). Subaru’s standard suite of EyeSight driver-assistance features is supplemented by the addition of standard Blind Spot Detection with Lane Change Assist and Rear Cross Traffic Alert, as well as a reverse automatic braking system.

Our test vehicle was finished in attractive (and appropriately outdoorsy) Autumn Green Metallic paint and equipped with the Onyx Edition’s one available option package—a $2200 group that consists of a cargo-area cover; panoramic power sunroof; and an upgraded STARLINK multimedia system that comes with voice-activated navigation, a high-resolution 8-inch touchscreen, and Apple CarPlay/Android Auto smartphone connectivity.

The Ascent debuted as a 2019 model and has seen only minor trim and equipment-level changes since then. You can check out our First Spin report and review of a top-line Touring model for more information. The Ascent is a likable three-row family SUV that feels distinctly like a Subaru (so if you’re stepping up from an Outback, it won’t seem foreign to you). However, class rivals such as the Hyundai Palisade, Kia Telluride, and Volkswagen Atlas offer more passenger and cargo room. Likewise, the Ascent’s acceleration is notably more leisurely than its V6-powered rivals, and based on our real-world mpg results, it doesn’t offer any significant improvements in fuel economy.

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