Used Outback for sale
List Price Range:$5,699 - $7,000
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Edmunds' Expert Review

  • Standard all-wheel drive, generous standard equipment list, exemplary build and materials quality, strong power from turbo and H6 engines, balanced ride and handling dynamics, capable performance off-road.
  • Automatic transmission upshifts too early, desirable features restricted to top-line VDC model, smaller backseat than most competitors.

Solid all-terrain capability, nimble handling, a varied engine lineup and a luxurious interior make the 2006 Subaru Outback an excellent all-weather family vehicle. If you're thinking of buying a traditional SUV, you may find this Subaru car a better fit.

Vehicle overview

We've been fans of the Outback since its inception. Little did Subaru know that back in 1995, when the Japanese automaker introduced a gussied-up Legacy Wagon called the Outback, that it was about to revolutionize the way Americans thought of sport-utility vehicles. Essentially a trim package that included gray trim, white-lettered tires and a catchy name, the Subaru Outback became a phenomenon in 1996 after it was billed "The World's First Sport-Utility Wagon." That's the year Subaru raised the suspension, added large headlight-size foglights and boosted power.

Although an excellent alternative to SUV ownership, the Outback began to lose its edge as more and more manufacturers added kinder, gentler crossover SUVs to their lineups. By the early years of the 21st century, Subaru's heavy-duty wagon was surrounded by a population of car-based SUVs that could do most of what it did, while offering more room for growing families. So for 2005, the Outback underwent a full redesign during which it slimmed down, powered up and slipped into some more stylish digs.

Like the Legacy, the Subaru Outback takes on a sleeker, more angular look this year, but it has a more aggressive grille, raised hood strakes and, on the wagon, dark tinted rear glass. Additionally, Subaru decided that buyers were no longer so enthusiastic about the "just in from the woods" aesthetic of the original Outbacks, so all models wear black-letter tires instead of the expected white-letter sidewalls. In spite of its more upscale look, the Subaru Outback is actually more rugged than ever before. Ground clearance ranges from 8.4 to 8.7 inches depending on the model you choose -- previously, the tallest Outback stood just 7.9 inches off the ground.

Inside, the cockpit has a much more cohesive look along with a classy two-tone ensemble. Meanwhile, there's some big news under the hood. A modified version of the WRX STi's 2.5-liter turbocharged engine with 250 horsepower and 250 lb-ft of torque has joined the lineup. Models with this engine are an intriguing alternative to the pricey H6. It has torque and an available manual transmission, and it's the faster of the two and an obvious choice for weekend enthusiasts. For those who prefer the smoothness of six cylinders, the H6 motor picks up variable valve timing and lift this year so that it, too, is up to 250 hp. For those on a budget, Subaru will continue to offer a naturally aspirated 2.5-liter, four-cylinder engine as well.

The 2006 Subaru Outback is a wagon with no equal when it comes to off-road capability and, with a powerful engine lineup and sharp reflexes on pavement, you'll find it fun to drive even when the weather isn't terrible. A small backseat will keep it from competing with larger-capacity SUVs, but for the family of four looking for stylish transportation for all seasons, it could be a perfect fit.

2006 Subaru Outback models

The Subaru Outback is available as a wagon or sedan. Wagons come in 2.5i, 2.5 XT, 3.0 R, 3.0 R L.L. Bean and 3.0 R VDC Limited. Limited Packages are available on 2.5i and 2.5 XT models. The sedan comes in a single L.L. Bean trim. The 2.5i models include 16-inch alloy wheels, air conditioning, a CD player, a power driver seat, cruise control, trip computer and a rear limited-slip differential. Opt for the Limited package and you'll get heated leather seats, a wiper de-icer, a CD changer, dual-zone automatic climate control and dual moonroofs. Upgrade to the 2.5 XT and you get 17-inch wheels, bigger brakes, sport seats and a Momo steering wheel; order the Limited Package to get leather upholstery and the moonroofs. The base 3.0 R model is equipped much like the XT, while other 3.0s come with a full load of luxury amenities, plus a tire-pressure monitor, steering wheel audio controls and mahogany trim. The L.L. Bean model offers perforated leather upholstery, while the VDC wagon is your ticket to stability control and an upgraded stereo. A navigation system is also standard on the VDC; it's optional on the XT and L.L. Bean.

2006 Highlights

A navigation system has been added to the options list for 2006, and trim levels have been realigned. Non-turbo four-cylinder models get a bump in horsepower (now up to 175) thanks to a new variable valve-lift system.

Performance & mpg

The 2.5i model is powered by a 2.5-liter horizontally opposed four-cylinder engine that makes 175 horsepower. The 2.5 XT upgrades to a 2.5-liter turbocharged engine with 250 hp and 250 lb-ft of torque. The 3.0 models come with a 3.0-liter horizontally opposed six-cylinder (H6) good for 250 hp and 219 lb-ft of torque. Either 2.5-liter engine can be equipped with a five-speed manual transmission. A four-speed automatic is available on 2.5i models while 2.5 XT models get a five-speed auto. The H6 is only available with the five-speed automatic.

Safety

All Outback models have four-wheel antilock disc brakes with EBD, front-seat side-impact airbags, full-length side curtain airbags and active head restraints. Stability control is reserved for the top-line 3.0 R VDC Limited wagon.

Driving

Out on the road, the 2006 Subaru Outback rides smoothly and feels surefooted in the corners. Taken off-road, it can scamper up a rutted hillside with more gusto than just about any crossover SUV. Although the base engine provides only adequate power, acceleration is quick with either the turbo four or the H6. Unfortunately, the Outback's automatic transmissions still leave much to be desired, as they sap power by upshifting too early.

Interior

Inside, the Subaru Outback has a clean design with high-quality materials. Turbo models have darker interiors with metallic trim and electroluminescent gauges, while 3.0 models get matte-finish wood grain trim on the console that matches the real mahogany trim on the steering wheel. The seats are supportive, but the backseat is a bit tight for adults. Wagons provide 33.5 cubic feet of capacity behind their rear seats; 66 cubes with the seats folded.


Consumer reviews

Read what other owners think about the Used 2006 Subaru Outback.

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Most helpful consumer reviews

3.5 out of 5 stars
Liked my old one better
Nancy,10/15/2007
2.5i 4dr Wagon AWD (2.5L 4cyl 4A)
My 2006 Outback is the second one that I have purchased. I bought it sight unseen based upon my satisfaction with my 2000 Outback. My 2000 & I were in a near fatal road rage accident where I was forced off the road & hit a telephone pole head on at 50 MPH. I survived with very minor injuries but alas, the car did not. I really loved my 2000 Outback. I can't say the same about my 2006. As soon as I sat in it,I knew it was not the same vehicle. The seats were less comfortable, acceleration was not as good, the side view mirrors have huge blindspots due to the redesign. The windows whistle, The body is less sturdy, the glove box too small,cheap cup holders, donut tire, basically made cheaper.
4.63 out of 5 stars
A superior fast touring car
Hans Harald,06/01/2009
3.0 R 4dr Wagon AWD (3.0L 6cyl 5A)
Am 70 years old now, owned some very nice and powerful cars during my life, this one is the most satisfying of them all, by far, especially after replacing the OEM Yokohamas with Michelins (see below under "suggested improvements"), which actually make the car do what I am waxing about in this review!
4.13 out of 5 stars
Only time I've bought a 3rd one.
Jon C.,10/16/2005
3.0 R L.L.Bean Edition 4dr Wagon AWD (3.0L 6cyl 5A)
Compared to other SUV's I tried, this one is the only one that didn't handle like a truck (compared to Ford Explorer, Nissan Xterra, etc.) and didn't get buffeted around in the wind. This is the 3rd one I've owned and it is still the best snow car I've ever driven (I ski and regularly go into snow country). It also quite adequately tows my boat. My only gripe is that the current model's "sport automatic" drive is not as smooth as my last one (2002).
4.38 out of 5 stars
Solid Car
matt,12/12/2005
3.0 R L.L.Bean Edition 4dr Wagon AWD (3.0L 6cyl 5A)
This is my first Subaru. It has a very solid feel to it, which I like. The interior is comfortable, and the sunroof is a thing of beauty. I love to bounce it around on rutted old roads while going fishing, and love how it handles in the snow and ice. I've always owned slightly larger cars, so it takes a bit of getting used to the size. The transmission is the only blemish I can mention. Going uphill it tends to never find its groove, keeps shifting up and down and up and down. Also it seems it takes the tranny a bit to warm up on cool mornings, it might try a clumsy double shift while accelerating out of the driveway.

Safety

NHTSA Overall Rating

The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration offers independent analysis.
  • Frontal Barrier Crash Rating
    OverallNot Rated
    Driver5 / 5
    Passenger5 / 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
    Rollover4 / 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
    Not Tested
  • Roof Strength Test
    Not Tested
  • Rear Crash Protection / Head Restraint
    Acceptable
  • IIHS Small Overlap Front Test
    Not Tested
  • Moderate Overlap Front Test
    Not Tested

More about the 2006 Subaru Outback

Used 2006 Subaru Outback Overview

The Used 2006 Subaru Outback is offered in the following submodels: Outback Sedan, Outback Wagon. Available styles include 2.5i 4dr Wagon AWD (2.5L 4cyl 4A), 2.5i Limited 4dr Wagon AWD (2.5L 4cyl 4A), 2.5 XT Ltd 4dr Wagon AWD w/Black Int (2.5L 4cyl Turbo 5A), 2.5i 4dr Wagon AWD (2.5L 4cyl 5M), 2.5 XT 4dr Wagon AWD (2.5L 4cyl Turbo 5A), 2.5 XT Ltd 4dr Wagon AWD w/Black Int (2.5L 4cyl Turbo 5M), 3.0 R L.L.Bean Edition 4dr Wagon AWD (3.0L 6cyl 5A), 2.5i Limited 4dr Wagon AWD (2.5L 4cyl 5M), 2.5 XT 4dr Wagon AWD (2.5L 4cyl Turbo 5M), 2.5 XT Ltd 4dr Wagon AWD w/Black Int, NAVI (2.5L 4cyl Turbo 5A), 2.5 XT Ltd 4dr Wagon AWD w/Ivory Int (2.5L 4cyl Turbo 5M), 3.0 R L.L.Bean Edition 4dr Sedan AWD (3.0L 6cyl 5A), 3.0 R VDC Limited 4dr Wagon AWD w/NAVI (3.0L 6cyl 5A), 2.5i Limited 4dr Sedan AWD (2.5L 4cyl 4A), 2.5i Special Edition 4dr Wagon AWD (2.5L 4cyl 4A), 3.0 R L.L.Bean Edition 4dr Sedan AWD w/NAVI (3.0L 6cyl 5A), 2.5 XT Ltd 4dr Wagon AWD w/Ivory Int, NAVI (2.5L 4cyl Turbo 5A), 2.5 XT Ltd 4dr Wagon AWD w/Ivory Int (2.5L 4cyl Turbo 5A), 3.0 R 4dr Wagon AWD (3.0L 6cyl 5A), and 3.0 R L.L.Bean Edition 4dr Wagon AWD w/NAVI (3.0L 6cyl 5A). Pre-owned Subaru Outback models are available with a 2.5 L-liter gas engine, with output up to 250 hp, depending on engine type. The Used 2006 Subaru Outback comes with all wheel drive. Available transmissions include: 4-speed shiftable automatic, 5-speed shiftable automatic. The Used 2006 Subaru Outback comes with a 3 yr./ 36000 mi. basic warranty, a 3 yr./ 36000 mi. roadside warranty, and a 5 yr./ 60000 mi. powertrain warranty.

What's a good price on a Used 2006 Subaru Outback?

Price comparisons for Used 2006 Subaru Outback trim styles:

  • The Used 2006 Subaru Outback 2.5i is priced between $5,699 and$7,000 with odometer readings between 114554 and176422 miles.
  • The Used 2006 Subaru Outback 2.5i Limited is priced between $6,500 and$6,500 with odometer readings between 121972 and121972 miles.

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 Subaru Outbacks 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 Outback for sale near. There are currently 3 used and CPO 2006 Outbacks listed for sale in your area, with list prices as low as $5,699 and mileage as low as 114554 miles. Simply research the type of car you're interested in and then select a used car from our massive database to find cheap prew-owned 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 Used 2006 Subaru Outback.

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

Find a used Subaru Outback for sale - 11 great deals out of 21 listings starting at $16,940.

Find a used Subaru for sale - 8 great deals out of 23 listings starting at $19,604.

Find a used certified pre-owned Subaru Outback for sale - 8 great deals out of 21 listings starting at $12,881.

Find a used certified pre-owned Subaru for sale - 4 great deals out of 14 listings starting at $7,894.

Should I lease or buy a 2006 Subaru Outback?

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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Check out Subaru Outback lease specials