Used 2006 Subaru Baja

Pros & Cons

  • Comfortable ride, stable handling, turbo model's peppy performance, convenience of an open bed, unlikely to be lost in a parking lot.
  • Midgate's glass isn't removable, limited towing and hauling capability, tight rear seat, no side airbags.
Other years
Subaru Baja for Sale
List Price Estimate
$6,615 - $11,748

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Edmunds' Expert Review

The 2006 Subaru Baja is an interesting car-and-pickup blend that comes up a bit short in outright functionality.

Vehicle overview

The Subaru Baja is, generally speaking, a car-based crew-cab pickup truck. Based on the 2000-2004 Subaru Outback, it shares the same 104.3-inch wheelbase, but is 6 inches longer in rear overhang. The Baja has seating accommodations for four full-size adults, with rear-seat legroom noticeably tighter than in the Outback. But instead of a conventional trunk or the glassed-in storage box of a wagon, the Baja substitutes the cargo box of a pickup truck. Subaru figures that the Baja appeals to those wanting utility without the harsh ride and poor fuel economy that often come with a truck-based vehicle.

Should you think that the Baja is just a remake of the El Camino, Subaru has added some features that make the cargo box even more useful. Most importantly, the Baja's cargo bed can be extended by using the "Switchback" feature, similar to the Midgate design found on the Avalanche. The front of the bed along with the rear seat back fold forward into the rear seating area, expanding the usable length of the bed from 41.5 to 60 inches. The rear glass is not removable, however, which limits your hauling options. Although the Baja is relatively enjoyable to drive thanks to its responsive suspension and steering, acceleration is sluggish with the base 165-horsepower, 2.5-liter, four-cylinder engine. Subaru addressed that issue last year by adding a turbocharged version of that engine, good for 210 hp. The Baja Turbo still isn't a performance car any more than it's suited for serious towing and hauling, but it is a lot peppier in traffic.

Even with the power increase, it's our opinion that the Subaru Baja is more of an exercise in style and a statement about your lifestyle than a conveyance rooted in function. It's for those who frequent Home Depot as a hobby, picking up a new ficus and trellis instead of drywall and furniture. It's great at transporting bulky sports equipment, such as a surfboard or skis, but not necessarily great for moms picking up kids and the groceries during a rainstorm. The 2006 Subaru Baja has limited appeal, but for those who need about half the open-bed cargo utility of a truck as well as a vehicle that rides like a car, the Baja is a reasonable choice.

Subaru Baja models

The Subaru Baja is a four-door utility vehicle available in two trims -- Baja Sport and Baja Turbo. The Baja Sport starts you out with 16-inch alloy wheels; foglights; air conditioning; a CD player; cruise control; a moonroof; power windows, locks and mirrors; and keyless entry. Step up to the Baja Turbo and you get a more powerful turbocharged engine along with an upgraded six-speaker audio system with an in-dash CD changer. Among the available options are a tubular bed extender, a bed-mounted bike rack, roof-mounted rally lights and a sunroof. Turbo models are eligible for a Leather Package that provides leather upholstery, heated front seats and a hard bed cover.

2006 Highlights

There are no changes to the 2006 Subaru Baja.

Performance & mpg

The Baja Sport is equipped with a 2.5-liter, four-cylinder engine that delivers 165 horsepower and 166 pound-feet of torque. The Baja Turbo boasts a turbocharged version that produces 210 hp and 235 lb-ft of twist. A five-speed manual transmission is standard; a four-speed automatic is optional. Automatic-equipped Baja Turbo models also get an automanual gate that allows for manual shifting when the driver desires. All Subaru vehicles sold in the United States come with standard all-wheel drive, and the Baja is no exception. This Subaru can carry a maximum payload of 1,050 pounds, and has a 2,400-pound towing capacity. This is about half of what a typical compact pickup can pull, but it's enough to easily accommodate a personal watercraft or a couple of motorcycles.

Safety

The Subaru Baja comes standard with four-wheel antilock disc brakes and pre-tensioners and load limiters for the front seatbelts. Side airbags are not available. Neither the NHTSA nor the IIHS has crash tested the Baja.

Driving

Acceleration can be a bit sluggish in Bajas with the base engine, so those looking for a little excitement would be advised to check out the Baja Turbo model, which has ample power for just about any situation. The 2006 Subaru Baja has a fully independent suspension and rides much more like a car than a truck. It has a comfortable ride around town and never feels unstable when going around corners. Heavy-duty suspension components and 8.2 inches of ground clearance allow it to tackle rutted dirt roads and sandy washes without a problem, but don't expect to do any serious boulder bashing.

Interior

The Baja's cargo box is smaller than the beds of traditional compact pickups, but this car-based pickup does offer a handsome interior that scores high marks for style, comfort and ergonomics. Utility is maximized via the Switchback feature; to use, flip up the bottom cushion of the rear seat, fold the rear seatback forward and fold the trapdoor flat into the rear seat. The rear window is fixed, however, and that puts limits on the shape and height of items that can fit. An optional tailgate extender is available that increases cargo bed length to 75 inches.

Scorecard

Overallundefined / 5

Consumer reviews

Read what other owners think about the 2006 Subaru Baja.

5 star reviews: 74%
4 star reviews: 21%
3 star reviews: 2%
2 star reviews: 3%
1 star reviews: 0%
Average user rating: 4.7 stars based on 38 total reviews

Trending topics in reviews

  • comfort
  • handling & steering
  • interior
  • fuel efficiency
  • appearance
  • engine
  • reliability & manufacturing quality
  • spaciousness
  • acceleration
  • value
  • seats
  • towing
  • sound system
  • doors
  • lights
  • wheels & tires
  • ride quality
  • off-roading
  • driving experience
  • road noise
  • brakes
  • maintenance & parts
  • oil
  • infotainment system
  • technology
  • dashboard
  • climate control

Most helpful consumer reviews

5 out of 5 stars, 03 Baja 2.5 non turbo
wot27,

Being my 2nd Subaru, I am glad this one isn't the SVX. I LOVE this one, its great in the bends, a little on slow side w/out turbo but keeping rpm's up compensates fine for "in the city" driving if you feel the need. I have slight leak at 60k miles on my heads. As it seems to be known issue, I am displeased SOA has not done something to correct issue with the customers. as long as I get too 100k ill do head gaskets, water pump and belt @ same time. till then just keeping the oil changed.

5 out of 5 stars, Dream car/truck
Frankie,

Ever since the first ad came out for the Baja, I was hooked. I test drove the first models our Subaru dealership got and it was instant want. They handle beautifully, gets awesome gas mileage and has a wonderful sporty design. The comforts of a sedan with the utility of a truck. I had a 2000 Ford Focus before I got the Baja I have now, and when it started giving me problems, I wasted no time giving the dealership the keys and traded it for my very own, my first Subaru Baja. And I am happy I made the decision. This vehicle is certainly made for someone like me with the life style I have. Versatile and impressive. A well built machine for its day!

4.75 out of 5 stars, Fun to drive
DWL,

It is not a high performance car but I knew that when I bought it. It is peppy for its engine and body size. It also handles curves really nice. As for comfort, it is comfortable as I need and it gets good gas mileage considering I drive 78 miles everyday to and from work. I am getting in the upper 26 to lower 27/mpg.

3 out of 5 stars, defective
vince,

love the car but there is a flaw with the head gaskets. I'm leaking oil at 78,000 mi. dealer wants 1500 to fix. seems I'm not alone, beware!

Write a review

See all 38 reviews




Features & Specs

Sport 4dr Crew Cab AWD SB features & specs
Sport 4dr Crew Cab AWD SB
2.5L 4cyl 4A
MPG 19 city / 25 hwy
Seats 4
4-speed automatic
Gas
165 hp @ 5600 rpm

Turbo 4dr Crew Cab AWD SB features & specs
Turbo 4dr Crew Cab AWD SB
2.5L 4cyl Turbo 4A
MPG 16 city / 21 hwy
Seats 4
4-speed shiftable automatic
Gas
210 hp @ 5600 rpm

Sport 4dr Crew Cab AWD SB features & specs
Sport 4dr Crew Cab AWD SB
2.5L 4cyl 5M
MPG 20 city / 26 hwy
Seats 4
5-speed manual
Gas
165 hp @ 5600 rpm

Turbo 4dr Crew Cab AWD SB features & specs
Turbo 4dr Crew Cab AWD SB
2.5L 4cyl Turbo 5M
MPG 17 city / 23 hwy
Seats 4
5-speed manual
Gas
210 hp @ 5600 rpm

See all Used 2006 Subaru Baja features & specs

FAQ

Is the Subaru Baja a good car?

The Edmunds experts tested the 2006 Baja both on the road and at the track. You probably care about Subaru Baja fuel economy, so it's important to know that the Baja gets an EPA-estimated 18 mpg to 22 mpg, depending on the configuration. And then there's safety and reliability. Edmunds has all the latest NHTSA and IIHS crash-test scores, plus industry-leading expert and consumer reviews to help you understand what it's like to own and maintain a Subaru Baja. Learn more

Is the Subaru Baja reliable?

To determine whether the Subaru Baja is reliable, read Edmunds' authentic consumer reviews, which come from real owners and reveal what it's like to live with the Baja. Look for specific complaints that keep popping up in the reviews, and be sure to compare the Baja's average consumer rating to that of competing vehicles. Learn more

Is the 2006 Subaru Baja a good car?

There's a lot to consider if you're wondering whether the 2006 Subaru Baja is a good car. Safety scores, fuel economy, cargo capacity and feature availability should all be factors in determining whether the 2006 Baja is a good car for you. Check back soon for the official Edmunds Rating from our expert testing team Learn more

How much should I pay for a 2006 Subaru Baja?

The least-expensive 2006 Subaru Baja is the 2006 Subaru Baja Sport 4dr Crew Cab AWD SB (2.5L 4cyl 5M). Including destination charge, it arrives with a Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price (MSRP) of about $22,495.

Other versions include:

  • Sport 4dr Crew Cab AWD SB (2.5L 4cyl 4A) which starts at $23,295
  • Turbo 4dr Crew Cab AWD SB (2.5L 4cyl Turbo 4A) which starts at $25,595
  • Sport 4dr Crew Cab AWD SB (2.5L 4cyl 5M) which starts at $22,495
  • Turbo 4dr Crew Cab AWD SB (2.5L 4cyl Turbo 5M) which starts at $24,595
  • Turbo 4dr Crew Cab AWD SB w/Leather Package (2.5L 4cyl Turbo 4A) which starts at $27,495
Learn more

What are the different models of Subaru Baja?

If you're interested in the Subaru Baja, the next question is, which Baja model is right for you? Baja variants include Sport 4dr Crew Cab AWD SB (2.5L 4cyl 4A), Turbo 4dr Crew Cab AWD SB (2.5L 4cyl Turbo 4A), Sport 4dr Crew Cab AWD SB (2.5L 4cyl 5M), and Turbo 4dr Crew Cab AWD SB (2.5L 4cyl Turbo 5M). For a full list of Baja models, check out Edmunds’ Features & Specs page. Learn more

More about the 2006 Subaru Baja

Used 2006 Subaru Baja Overview

The Used 2006 Subaru Baja is offered in the following submodels: Baja Crew Cab. Available styles include Sport 4dr Crew Cab AWD SB (2.5L 4cyl 4A), Turbo 4dr Crew Cab AWD SB (2.5L 4cyl Turbo 4A), Sport 4dr Crew Cab AWD SB (2.5L 4cyl 5M), Turbo 4dr Crew Cab AWD SB (2.5L 4cyl Turbo 5M), and Turbo 4dr Crew Cab AWD SB w/Leather Package (2.5L 4cyl Turbo 4A).

What do people think of the 2006 Subaru Baja?

Consumer ratings and reviews are also available for the 2006 Subaru Baja and all its trim types. Overall, Edmunds users rate the 2006 Baja 4.7 on a scale of 1 to 5 stars. Edmunds consumer reviews allow users to sift through aggregated consumer reviews to understand what other drivers are saying about any vehicle in our database. Detailed rating breakdowns (including performance, comfort, value, interior, exterior design, build quality, and reliability) are available as well to provide shoppers with a comprehensive understanding of why customers like the 2006 Baja.

Edmunds Expert Reviews

Edmunds experts have compiled a robust series of ratings and reviews for the 2006 Subaru Baja and all model years in our database. Our rich content includes expert reviews and recommendations for the 2006 Baja featuring deep dives into trim levels and features, performance, mpg, safety, interior, and driving. Edmunds also offers expert ratings, road test and performance data, long-term road tests, first-drive reviews, video reviews and more.

Our Review Process

This review was written by a member of Edmunds' editorial team of expert car reviewers. Our team drives every car you can buy. We put the vehicles through rigorous testing, evaluating how they drive and comparing them in detail to their competitors.

We're also regular people like you, so we pay attention to all the different ways people use their cars every day. We want to know if there's enough room for our families and our weekend gear and whether or not our favorite drink fits in the cupholder. Our editors want to help you make the best decision on a car that fits your life.

What's a good price for a New 2006 Subaru Baja?

Which 2006 Subaru Bajas are available in my area?

Shop Edmunds' car, SUV, and truck listings of over 6 million vehicles to find a cheap new, used, or certified pre-owned (CPO) 2006 Subaru Baja for sale near. Simply research the type of car you're interested in and then select a car from our massive database to find cheap vehicles for sale near you. Once you have identified a used vehicle you're interested in, check the AutoCheck vehicle history reports, read dealer reviews, and find out what other owners paid for the 2006 Subaru Baja.

Can't find a new 2006 Subaru Bajas you want in your area? Consider a broader search.

Find a new Subaru Baja for sale - 9 great deals out of 20 listings starting at $21,630.

Find a new Subaru for sale - 8 great deals out of 17 listings starting at $9,329.

Why trust Edmunds?

Edmunds has deep data on over 6 million new, used, and certified pre-owned vehicles, including rich, trim-level features and specs information like: MSRP, average price paid, warranty information (basic, drivetrain, and maintenance), features (upholstery, bluetooth, navigation, heated seating, cooled seating, cruise control, parking assistance, keyless ignition, satellite radio, folding rears seats ,run flat tires, wheel type, tire size, wheel tire, sunroof, etc.), vehicle specifications (engine cylinder count, drivetrain, engine power, engine torque, engine displacement, transmission), fuel economy (city, highway, combined, fuel capacity, range), vehicle dimensions (length, width, seating capacity, cargo space), car safety, true cost to own. Edmunds also provides tools to allow shopper to compare vehicles to similar models of their choosing by warranty, interior features, exterior features, specifications, fuel economy, vehicle dimensions, consumer rating, edmunds rating, and color.

Should I lease or buy a 2006 Subaru Baja?

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.

Check out Subaru lease specials