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2022 Subaru Ascent Trim Levels, Configurations & Comparisons.

2022 Subaru Ascent Trim Levels, Configurations & Comparisons: Base vs Premium, Onyx Edition vs Limited and Touring
Reviewed & fact checked by
James Murdoch

Compare the 2022 Subaru Ascent Trims - Base vs Premium, Onyx Edition vs Limited and Touring. What is the difference between them?

The Ascent is Subaru's largest SUV. With three rows and room for up to eight people, it appeals to those who need all of that interior space. When the rear seats are lowered, it has a maximum cargo volume of 86.5 cubic feet, and this means that people can load all kinds of gear in the back. The 2022 Subaru Ascent is a fairly strong vehicle as well with a turbocharged engine under its hood, and it should please many drivers with its comfortable cabin, advanced technology, and comprehensive safety package.

With the Ascent, Subaru offers five distinct trim options - ranging in price from competitively-priced to luxurious. Starting with the base model up through Premium and Onyx Edition (brand new for 2022!), drivers can make subtle increases in cost of upgrade as they move toward Limited mode before being asked to take a relatively significant jump if wishes to arrive at top-of-the line Touring style!

This guide should provide useful information to prospective buyers who are trying to figure out which type of 2022 Subaru Ascent would be best for them.

Compare the Ascent Base Trim vs Premium. What is the difference?

In a crowded market, the base trim of the Subaru Ascent pops out for several reasons. Firstly, its affordability attracts the attentions of budget-conscious buyers. Secondly, it comes standard with symmetrical all-wheel drive, which ensures exceptional traction. The 2.4-liter turbocharged engine is another highlight, powering every trim in the Ascent lineup and providing an impressive 260 horsepower and 277 pound-feet of torque.

Although the base trim and the Premium Subaru Ascent carry the same basic mechanical components, the Premium's towing capacity is higher. It can haul up to 5,000 pounds. Meanwhile, the base trim is limited to 2,000 pounds. However, both trims come with X-MODE, a program that improves the Ascent's stability in challenging conditions. They also feature various helpful systems, such as traction control, active torque vectoring, and hill descent control, which aid in navigating through different types of challenging conditions.

Looking at the exterior of the two trims, you can spot minor differences. The Premium has a windshield wiper de-icer that can come in handy in the winter, and it has body-color side mirrors instead of the standard black ones. Plus, its wheels are gray with a machine finish rather than having a silver finish. Both trims ride on 18-inch wheels, though the Premium has optional 20-inch wheels.

The Premium cabin boasts irresistible features designed to keep you comfortable during any season. Enjoy a cozy drive in winter with heated front seats, while staying cool and fresh the rest of the year thanks to stain-resistant cloth upholstery. Not only that - accessorize your ride however you like with an adjustable driver's seat, leather-wrapped steering wheel and gear shifter, as well as second row climate controls!

The 2021 model of the car comes with an upgraded multimedia setup, offering drivers a range of choices for staying connected and entertained on-the-go. The Premium trim has access to an 8" touchscreen along with Wi-Fi capability while base models have 6.5 inch screens that lack hotspot connection options - perfect for streaming media content! And whichever version you select will come stocked up with powerful features like Apple CarPlay & Android Auto, SiriusXM radio compatibility, HD Radio sound quality plus Bluetooth connections and CD players too.

The Premium trim of this vehicle offers some extra driver-assist technologies to give drivers an added sense of security. Beyond the automatic high beams, pre-collision braking, lane departure warning and adaptive cruise control with lane centering found in all trims it also boasts blind spot monitoring and rear cross-traffic alert - giving those behind the wheel a heightened awareness as to what is going on around them while they drive.

One final element seen in the Premium but not the base trim is STARLINK technology. It allows drivers to do a variety of things, including call for assistance in case of emergencies, receive monthly vehicle health reports, and use apps on their smartphones to remotely start their engines and lock or unlock their doors. Given the growing dependence on smartphones and an increasing expectation that information should be easily accessed, STARLINK should be an attractive component to a prospective buyer.

Compare the Premium vs Onyx Edition Trims. What is the difference?

Subaru introduced the Onyx Edition as part of its 2022 model year lineup, primarily focusing on aesthetic enhancements. This trim strikes a bold image that is appealing to many people. Subarus aren't exactly known for being that flashy, so the Onyx Edition could broaden the brand's appeal and attract a wider audience.

The Onyx Edition distinguishes itself with eye-catching black exterior accents. In addition to massive 20-inch black wheels, it gets a black grille and Crystal Black Silica side mirrors with integrated turn signals. It also features LED fog lights and the option of a panoramic moonroof, giving it an extra touch of sophistication.

Moving on to the interior, the Onyx Edition's cabin shares many features with the Premium trim, such as heated front seats and a power-adjustable driver's seat. However, the Onyx Edition gains more luxurious components. These include a heated steering wheel, water-repellent StarTex upholstery for the seats, as well as silver carbon-fiber accents on the dashboard and doors.

The Onyx Edition is one of two Ascent trims that equips standard captain's chairs in its second row. It's a feature that the Premium trim offers but at an additional cost. Captain's chairs are preferred by customers because it gives the passengers some extra legroom and ease of access to the third row.

In terms of technology, the Onyx Edition has more advanced elements. It gives customers the convenience of keyless access, push-button start, pin-code vehicle access, and an auto-dimming rearview mirror with a compass and the HomeLink system. That rearview mirror is a "smart" model, meaning that it can show a live feed of what's behind the SUV. This would be necessary if the cabin is filled with cargo or tall passengers that are blocking the view. Everything just mentioned, other than the live video feed capability on the rearview mirror, is optional on the Premium.

The Onyx Edition and Premium share the same type of infotainment system, but the Onyx boasts extra USB ports. Specifically, the Onyx Edition features double ports in each of its three rows, while the Premium and base trim only offer a single pair of USB ports in only their first two rows. Also, the Onyx Edition does come with the option to upgrade to a system with integrated navigation.

Talking about safety, the one thing that the Onyx Edition has that the Premium doesn't is reverse automatic braking. If the SUV is backing up and is about to run into an object, reverse automatic braking can engage and prevent a collision from occurring.

Compare the Onyx Edition Trim vs Limited. What is the difference?

At the Limited level, passengers can experience luxurious comfort with heated leather seats both in front and second row. The driver's seat is power-adjustable for effortless positioning while a host of carefully crafted details provide an elevated look throughout the cabin.

The Limited is one of those trims that have available second-row captain's chairs. If that option is not taken, then the standard configuration would be to have a bench seat. Please note that the Onyx Edition is only available with captain's chairs in that middle row.

Both trims share identical technology and safety suites, save for one small difference: the Limited trim offers the option to upgrade to a premium sound system. This upscale audio experience includes a 792-watt GreenEdge amplifier with a whopping 14 speakers, which is quite a leap from the standard sound system's six speakers.

One other thing is that the smart rearview mirror, which can display the video feed provided by the rear-facing camera, is not offered with the Limited like it is with the Onyx Edition.

Stylistically, the Limited is a little less aggressive than the Onyx Edition is. Its 20-inch wheels dark gray instead of being black. Rather than having black side mirrors, it has body-color ones.

Compare the Ascent Limited vs Touring Trim Levels. What is the difference?

The Touring trim shares some exterior similarities with the Limited, such as the bold and sporty 20-inch dark gray wheels. However, the Limited trim has a few extra features that really pop out, including shiny chrome door handles and satin chrome side mirrors with a convenient power-folding function. These head-turning chrome accents enfold a sense of sophistication and add a luxurious flair to the already impressive Limited model.

One major advantage of the Touring trim is that it comes equipped with a power moonroof as a standard feature. This panoramic moonroof is quite expansive and allows a wide view, creating a sense of openness and brightness within the cabin. Whether you want to soak up the natural sunlight or feel the fresh breeze, the moonroof can be easily tilted or slid open to suit your preferences.

The front seats of the Touring are heated and ventilated; you get ventilation only on this top-of-the-line trim. Unlike the Limited, the Touring gets second-row captain's chairs. It doesn't even have an option to get a bench seat in the middle row. This lowers its seating capacity to seven, but for some, the trade-off is worth it. Further, the Touring is the only trim to have sophisticated woodgrain accents in its cabin.

Subaru brings back the smart auto-dimming rearview mirror with the Touring trim, and it has given this trim a 120-volt AC power outlet in case people need access to a source of electricity when on the road.

The Touring has an eight-inch touchscreen like the others do, but this touchscreen has navigation built into it. Having navigation can be very useful when finding one's way through new territories. It can also be helpful when driving familiar roads, as it has SiriusXM Traffic and Travel Link. This program can provide updates about any traffic congestion to stay away from.

Plus, the Touring has the premium sound system that was previously mentioned as an available feature on the Limited. Remember that it takes the number of speakers up from six to 14, so the improvement in audio quality is significant.

For the most part, the safety package on the Touring is the same as the one found on Limited as well as the Onyx Edition. The major difference is that it has a 180-degree front-view monitor. This monitor can come in handy when parking, as it lets the driver figure out exactly how far the SUV is from another object. Guesswork is taken out of parking, and instead, drivers can be more precise.

Final Thoughts

Whether you're the adventurous type looking for a thrilling drive, or just crave reliability on your daily commute - Subaru has got it covered. With engines and all-wheel drives designed to meet every need across their entire trim range, there's only one factor left to consider: towing capacity - with the base model coming in slightly lower than its peers.

With the Premium, buyers will get more than just comfort and convenience. This trim provides a little bit of luxury with features like heated front seats to keep you warm during those chilly winter months, blind spot monitoring to help avoid dangerous collisions on busy roads, rear cross-traffic alert for backing out safely from parking spots or driveways in tight spaces - plus an upgraded 8-inch touchscreen compared to its 6.5 inch predecessor! To top it off, customers can choose between a second row bench seat or captain's chairs as well.

If you are up for a more pompous ride, the Limited model would be on your radar. With its head-during design, it's sure to make a striking image on the road. Sink into the plush leather seats and enjoy the cozy warmth of heated first and second-row seats while taking in the convenience of power-adjustable front-row seats. And if that's not enough, you can even add some sweet upgrades like captain's chairs, navigation, a top-notch sound system, and a panoramic moonroof. The best part? It does all this without having the steep price tag of the Touring.

Previous Year Trim Configurations:

2021 Subaru Ascent Trime Levels