2006 Pontiac Vibe Wagon Review | Edmunds.com

2006 Pontiac Vibe Wagon

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Pontiac Vibe Features and Specs

Features & Specs

  • Engine 1.8 L Inline 4-cylinder
  • Drivetrain Front Wheel Drive
  • Transmission 5-speed Manual
  • Horse Power 126 hp @ 6000 rpm
  • Fuel Economy 26/33 mpg
  • Bluetooth No
  • Navigation No
  • Heated Seats No

Review of the 2006 Pontiac Vibe

  • The 2006 Pontiac Vibe blends performance, practicality and affordability into a tastefully styled, but still fun sport wagon package. Here's one Pontiac that hits its mark.

  • Safety
  • Pros

    Comfortable ride, unique features, roomy backseat, versatile cargo area, good gas mileage, available stability control.

  • Cons

    All-wheel-drive version is sluggish, Toyota's version likely to have better resale value.

  • What's New for 2006

    Not much changes for the Pontiac Vibe in 2006. The optional DVD-based navigation system has been discontinued, while leather seating is a new item on the options list.

What Others Are Saying

Customer Reviews

  Average Consumer Rating (76 total reviews)  |  Write a Review

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

Still high mileage!

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Vehicle: 2006 Pontiac Vibe 4dr Wagon (1.8L 4cyl 5M)

I have owned my Vibe since buying it off the lot in 2006. Over 169,000 miles and it is still averaging 34mpg. Just took a trip and on the first leg of 300 miles at 60 mph I got 44mpg! The next leg of 200 miles at 75mpg 'only' got 35mpg. No equipment problems other than the known PCM issue that was recalled/replaced. Maybe I'm just lucky with Pontiacs. My first car, a brand new Sunbird, is still going at 280,000 miles. I gave it to my nephew 12 years ago, he has beaten the heck out of it but it won't die.

Vibe 2006 5 speed manual

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Vehicle: 2006 Pontiac Vibe 4dr Wagon (1.8L 4cyl 5M)

I bought this car when it had 170 000 km on it, since then (over 2 years ago) I've put on many miles on it (now have 286 000 km). I am very satisfied with the car. I have not put ANY repairs since I've had it other then repainting the top (little bit of rust started). I consistently get between 40 - 44 MPG (Canadian) doing mostly highway (that is about 33 - 36 US MPG). I drive conservative though, I keep it around 100 km/h on highway. I like the exterior of the vibe better then the matrix. The car has good cargo space and when you flip down the seats you get ridiculous amount of room back there, you don't know what your missing until you've had it trust me! Highly recommend!

8 of 8 people found this review helpful

Keep the recall in mind

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Vehicle: 2006 Pontiac Vibe 4dr Wagon (1.8L 4cyl 5M)

I agree with Edumonds it is sluggish, but 32 mpg city is a definate advantage. The seating is comfortable, road noise is average. It is fun to drive but it's not a sports car. NOW ABOUT THE RECALL - the PCM (performance control module) has issues, it will leave you stranded on the side of the road when it fails. The recall covers specific years, and specific engines so check yours at NHTSA.GOV and have it replaced if yours is recalled! The recall will cover replacing the PCM, labor, and towing to a GM dealer, but it does not cover a loaner vehicle. The dealer is very confident about the reliablity of this vehicle, this is the only issue they have with this vehicle.

Good little car.

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Vehicle: 2006 Pontiac Vibe 4dr Wagon (1.8L 4cyl 5M)

It's a functional wagon. Good MPGs, but with any car it's all in how you drive it. The 5spd manual is fairly fun. The steering is responsive and effective. It won't win awards for looks, but I bought her at 88,000 miles and hope to keep it until it dies. You really don't discover the usefulness in having a wagon until you own one. The stereo layout looked too 90s. Not acceptable for a car made in 2006.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

Hate to sell - loved

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Vehicle: 2006 Pontiac Vibe 4dr Wagon (1.8L 4cyl 5M)

Best car ever owned. Unable to drive anymore - health issues. This VIBE is without a doubt everything anyone wants in a car: good mileage, sporty, hauls a great deal, safe, comfortable and simply put you can't kill it. Particularly great for college kids.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

Best car ever!

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Vehicle: 2006 Pontiac Vibe 4dr Wagon (1.8L 4cyl 5M)

I love this car! I read reviews before I bought it and was very impressed. I bought my 06 Vibe to replace my 03 Dodge Neon. I was shocked at how much better the gas milage is! It has everything I want in a car. It is bigger inside than it looks. I love the room in the back seat and the seats are very comfortable. Cargo room is better than expected. The only problem I had mechanically is the torque converter needed replacing last year but it was still under warranty. I drive it daily 45 minutes each way to work and back and am excited to take it on my first long trip in 2 weeks (680 miles one way) Too bad it has been discontinued. I will buy them until they cant be found anymore!

Full 2006 Pontiac Vibe Review

What's New for 2006

Not much changes for the Pontiac Vibe in 2006. The optional DVD-based navigation system has been discontinued, while leather seating is a new item on the options list.


The Pontiac Vibe blends the handling of a small sedan with the practicality of a five-door hatchback. It's geared toward young buyers who want a stylish, practical vehicle but don't need or want a gas-guzzling SUV. Related to the Toyota Matrix, the Vibe is a jointly developed vehicle that shares most major components with its Japanese cousin.

At just 171 inches long, the Pontiac Vibe is slightly shorter than your typical compact sedan, but its body is taller and wider, which gives it a more spacious and functional interior. The rear seats fold completely flat to open up just over 54 cubic feet of cargo space, while the durable plastic load floor offers adjustable tie-down points via built-in floor tracks. The front-passenger seat also folds flat to function as an impromptu work table for the driver or to aid in loading longer items. Drivers sit higher in the Vibe than in most sedans but not so much as to make entry and exit a chore as in many SUVs.

Red backlit gauges with chrome-trim rings highlight a sharp-looking instrument panel, while the rest of the interior features straightforward climate controls, a well-placed stereo for easy access and even a 115-volt outlet for plugging in electronic devices. The Vibe's sporty looks are backed up by a well-sorted suspension that delivers a comfortable ride around town and responsive handling. Front-wheel drive is the standard layout, but all-wheel drive is available for negotiating the roads during inclement weather. The top-level GT version offers optional 17-inch wheels and tires for the performance-minded buyer in addition to its standard six-speed manual gearbox and peaky 170-hp, four-cylinder engine.

Lesser models make do with a detuned version of the GT's engine -- performance isn't as lively but most buyers will find the power band more user-friendly. Capable competitors like the PT Cruiser, Impreza, and Mazda 3 share many of the Vibe's attributes. The Vibe doesn't quite match any one of those vehicles in its specific areas of expertise, but it does offer a well-rounded package that delivers a little bit of everything without sacrificing practicality or fun. Add in the unique interior features and multiple drivetrain configurations, and the 2006 Pontiac Vibe certainly makes a strong case for itself as an attractive yet practical sport wagon that won't break the bank.

Body Styles, Trim Levels, and Options

The four-door, five-passenger Pontiac Vibe comes in three levels of trim: base, AWD and GT. Without any options added, all three are pretty frugal in terms of standard features. Every Vibe comes with air conditioning, CD audio, tilt steering and 16-inch wheels (alloys on the GT). Potential buyers should seriously consider getting the Preferred package as it adds power windows, locks and mirrors; cruise control; and keyless entry. There's also a Sun and Sound package with a power sunroof and an upgraded audio system. Order both, and Pontiac will throw in OnStar. For 2006, Pontiac has also made leather seating available as part of a new Premium package. Other Vibe option choices include satellite radio, an exterior-enhancing Sport package and 17-inch alloy wheels.

Powertrains and Performance

The Pontiac Vibe has two different engines available. Base models come with a 1.8-liter, 130-horsepower four-cylinder mated to either a standard five-speed manual or an optional four-speed automatic. All-wheel-drive versions come with the automatic only, and due to different exhaust routing, make just 122 hp. Top-of-the-line GT models get a 170-hp version of the same 1.8-liter four-cylinder and a standard six-speed manual transmission; an automatic is not available on the GT.


Seat-mounted side airbags for front occupants and full-length side curtain airbags are optional across the line. ABS brakes are standard on AWD and GT models, and optional on the base model. GT models also gain standard four-wheel disc brakes. For added security, stability control is offered on base models equipped with the automatic transmission. In governmental crash tests, the Pontiac Vibe earned a perfect five stars in frontal-impact testing, five stars for side impacts involving front occupants and four stars for side impacts involving rear occupants.

Interior Design and Special Features

The Pontiac Vibe features an interior that is both stylish and functional. Chrome-ringed gauges and metallic dash trim spice things up in front, while in back, the 60/40-split bench seat provides roomy accommodations for adult passengers and folds completely flat to create 54.1 cubic feet of usable cargo space. Other useful features include a front-passenger seat that folds flat for carrying extra-long items, a 115-volt AC power outlet for plugging in household devices and a completely flat cargo floor with adjustable tie-down anchors.

Driving Impressions

The Pontiac Vibe offers an elevated driving position that affords a great view of the road, but the ergonomics can be a bit awkward for some. The handling isn't particularly sporty but it is responsive, while the ride quality is smooth and comfortable on a day-to-day basis. Acceleration from the base motor is a bit sluggish, especially with the added weight of the all-wheel-drive system, but the GT is fast for a compact wagon, provided you're willing to take advantage of its higher-strung engine.

Talk About The 2006 Vibe

Gas Mileage


  • 26
  • cty
  • 33
  • highway
Calculate Yearly Fuel Costs