Used 2006 Buick Rainier

2006 Buick Rainier
List price range
2006 Buick Rainier

Pros

  • Exceptionally quiet ride, strong optional V8, easy to get in and out, decent off-road ability.

Cons

  • Subpar build and materials quality, sloppy handling, lacks key safety features, not enough storage space.
Buick Rainier years
2006

Used 2006 Buick Rainier for Sale

Buick Rainier 2006 CXL 4dr SUV AWD (4.2L 6cyl 4A)
104 miles
Used 2006
Buick Rainier
CXL
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Buick Rainier 2006 CXL 4dr SUV AWD (4.2L 6cyl 4A)
75,360 miles
Used 2006
Buick Rainier
CXL
Buchanan Cadillac
49.4 mi away
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Edmunds' Expert Review

Quiet and powerful, especially in V8 form, the 2006 Buick Rainier fails to look and act the part of a luxury SUV in most other respects.

vehicle overview

Introduced in 2004, the Buick Rainier is a luxury-oriented midsize SUV. It's built on GM's body-on-frame midsize SUV platform also used for the TrailBlazer and Envoy. To help distinguish it from its GM siblings, the Rainier has an elliptical Buick grille and unique headlights and taillights.

More importantly, the Rainier benefits from an initiative called "QuietTuning," whereby additional sound-deadening material has been applied in various trouble spots (engine compartment, doors, quarter panels). Further, the windshield and front side windows are coated in acoustic laminate, while the C- and D-pillars have reinforced seals. Aside from this upgrade and some extra wood trim in the cabin, the Buick Rainier looks, feels and drives like any TrailBlazer or Envoy. Interior materials and fit and finish are subpar compared to that of other premium-brand SUVs, while accommodations for the Rainier's five passengers offer mediocre levels of comfort and space.

Out on the road, this Buick SUV is as quiet as they come but lacks the handling composure expected of a luxury vehicle. Ride quality at least is smooth, and power is more than adequate with either engine choice. Problem is, building a good luxury SUV isn't just about making it quiet and smooth-riding. It should also handle with confidence out on the road. If you're mainly interested in a GM midsize SUV, choosing the Rainier for its extra refinement could make sense. But compared with SUVs like the 4Runner or Touareg, the 2006 Buick Rainier is simply outclassed.

Trim levels & features

The five-passenger Buick Rainier comes well equipped in one trim, CXL. Standard equipment includes 17-inch alloy wheels, four-wheel disc brakes with ABS, leather upholstery, wood accents in the cabin, power seats, memory for the seats and mirrors, dual-zone automatic climate control, a CD player and OnStar telematics. Various options include adjustable pedals, seat heaters, a DVD-based navigation system, a rear DVD entertainment system and a sunroof.

2006 Highlights

Stability control is now standard, and a locking rear differential is newly optional.

Performance & mpg

Two engines are available in the Buick Rainier. The standard power plant is GM's 4.2-liter inline six that makes 291 hp and 277 lb-ft of torque. For added towing power, an optional 5.3-liter V8 offers 300 hp and 330 lb-ft of torque. Both engines use the same transmission, a four-speed electronically controlled automatic that delivers seamless, well-timed shifts in almost all situations. Both two-wheel-drive and all-wheel-drive versions are available. Equipped with the V8, the Rainier can tow up to 6,700 pounds.

Safety

Four-wheel antilock disc brakes and stability control are standard. Full-length head curtain airbags are optional, but seat-mounted side airbags (for front occupants) are not available. The Buick Rainier earned five stars for both front- and rear-passenger side-impact protection when equipped with the optional airbags. Frontal impacts resulted in a three-star rating for the driver and four stars for the front passenger. The IIHS rated the Rainier's mechanical twin, the Chevy TrailBlazer, as "Marginal" (the second lowest score on a four-point scale) after conducting its frontal offset crash test.

Driving

The Rainier's standard inline six is smooth and powerful, and should be adequate for most shoppers. Those who wish for a little more grunt will be pleased with the Rainier's optional V8. With 300 hp available across a wide-rpm range, you'll rarely find yourself wishing for more. With its tough truck-based underpinnings, the 2006 Buick Rainier has a fair amount of real off-road capability. For the majority of buyers who won't be off-roading in their Buick SUV, it offers a smooth, comfortable ride. Handling is not what it should be, however, as the Rainier's poorly tuned rear suspension gives it a skittish feel when taking turns at higher speeds. Placed in similar situations, competitors feel much more confident.

Interior

Inside, the Buick Rainier looks similar to its GM cousins but offers sporty gauges similar to those found in the Rendezvous, along with real wood trim. The Buick's cabin is certainly quiet compared to a its cousins or any other SUV for that matter, as it includes extra sound-deadening material and laminated glass. There's adequate room for five passengers, but you're out of luck if you need a third-row seat. Seat comfort is average front and rear. With the rear seat folded down, there's 80 cubic feet of cargo space.


Consumer reviews

Read what other owners think about the 2006 Buick Rainier.

Overall Consumer Rating

Most helpful consumer reviews

Love my Buick!
missmegs702,08/15/2013
After owning many other cars, incl. a Mercedes C230, my Buick Rainier is by far my favorite car, maybe ever. I'm in my early 30's, and a few years ago I probably would have scoffed at driving a Buick. In 2011 we were looking for a work SUV for my hubby (trailblazer, etc) and came across it at a dealership and got it for a steal. The next year he bought a truck, and I happily took over the Rainier. It is so comfortable, air ride is fantastic and it drives great. We got an extended warranty and had to have some of the suspension fixed (airbags and sensors) right after we bought it, but really no issues since. Have taken it on several long trips and it's just so comfortable! Really a great SUV.
Glad I Found This One
JB,05/05/2007
I love this vehicle. I've owned several autos in the past, including two Toyotas and a Chevy Trailblazer ('04). I usually go pretty basic on them, then look at the owner's manual later and realize all the goodies I didn't have on mine. All that has changed with buying the Rainier. If this truck were a movie, it would truly be a "sleeper." I don't know why more people haven't discovered all the virtues of this vehicle.
Truly useful
Bill,10/30/2009
I purchased this former short-term rental vehicle with 13k miles on it in Dec '06. Now with 65k miles on it, the only thing that has malfunctioned was a headlight relay, quickly replaced under warranty. It's dead reliable, smooth, comfortable, great in snow and good at towing a 4k lbs, 26ft sailboat. Milage average is 19 mpg with mostly highway driving. Quality of materials and assembly is very high - the leather upholstery is actually better than that in my '04 Mercedes.
My car
mcquiston,08/21/2006
Very limtied cup holders. Front seats need to go back another couple of inches for taller people. The settings should be key linked and not linked via remote
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Features & Specs

MPG
14 city / 20 hwy
Seats 5
4-speed automatic
Gas
291 hp @ 6000 rpm
MPG
14 city / 20 hwy
Seats 5
4-speed automatic
Gas
291 hp @ 6000 rpm
See all Used 2006 Buick Rainier features & specs

Safety

NHTSA Overall Rating

The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration offers independent analysis.
  • Frontal Barrier Crash Rating
    OverallNot Rated
    Driver3 / 5
    Passenger4 / 5
  • Side Crash Rating
    OverallNot Rated
  • Side Barrier Rating
    OverallNot Rated
    Driver5 / 5
    Passenger5 / 5
  • Combined Side Barrier & Pole Ratings
    Front SeatNot Rated
    Back SeatNot Rated
  • Rollover
    Rollover3 / 5
    Dynamic Test ResultNo Tip
    Risk Of RolloverNot Rated
IIHS Rating
The Insurance Institute of Highway Safety uses extensive crash tests to determine car safety.
  • Side Impact Test
    Marginal
  • Roof Strength Test
    Not Tested
  • Rear Crash Protection / Head Restraint
    Poor
  • IIHS Small Overlap Front Test
    Not Tested
  • Moderate Overlap Front Test
    Acceptable

More about the 2006 Buick Rainier
Used 2006 Buick Rainier Overview

The Used 2006 Buick Rainier is offered in the following submodels: Rainier SUV. Available styles include CXL 4dr SUV AWD (4.2L 6cyl 4A), and CXL 4dr SUV (4.2L 6cyl 4A).

What's a good price on a Used 2006 Buick Rainier?

Shop with Edmunds for perks and special offers on used cars, trucks, and SUVs near Ashburn, VA. Doing so could save you hundreds or thousands of dollars. Edmunds also provides consumer-driven dealership sales and service reviews to help you make informed decisions about what cars to buy and where to buy them.

Which used 2006 Buick Rainiers are available in my area?

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Find a used Buick Rainier for sale - 9 great deals out of 13 listings starting at $17,851.

Find a used Buick for sale - 7 great deals out of 13 listings starting at $20,461.

Find a used certified pre-owned Buick Rainier for sale - 10 great deals out of 10 listings starting at $18,430.

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Should I lease or buy a 2006 Buick Rainier?

Is it better to lease or buy a car? Ask most people and they'll probably tell you that car buying is the way to go. And from a financial perspective, it's true, provided you're willing to make higher monthly payments, pay off the loan in full and keep the car for a few years. Leasing, on the other hand, can be a less expensive option on a month-to-month basis. It's also good if you're someone who likes to drive a new car every three years or so.

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