2006 Suzuki XL-7 Review

Used XL-7 for sale
List Price Estimate:$1,549 - $2,651
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Suzuki XL-7 model years
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Edmunds' Expert Review

  • Affordable base price, competent on- and off-road handling, available seven-passenger seating.
  • Cramped second- and third-row seating, dated design, low-grade interior plastics, side airbags not available.

By offering a third-row seat in a compact SUV, the 2006 Suzuki XL-7 answers a question not many people are asking.

Vehicle overview

Suzuki introduced the XL-7 in 2001. Its marketing campaign was aimed at people who didn't want to drive lumbering SUV giants, but needed lots of passenger space. In a crowded segment, the Suzuki XL-7 offers smaller dimensions, an affordable price and the ability to haul seven passengers. Based on the previous-generation Grand Vitara, the Suzuki XL-7 boasts an optional third-row seat. However, we've found the third-row seating to be of dubious value. There's plenty of luggage room with the rearmost seat folded down, but when the third row is in use, cargo capacity is very limited. Also, the mechanism to drop the third-row seating is fussy and awkward. The third row doesn't fold completely flat and it creates "canyons" into which loose cargo items can fall.

The XL-7's longer wheelbase and body-on-frame construction do give it a rugged feel. Plus, the steering and suspension work together to provide predictable handling for a truck-based SUV, though shoppers are apt to find the driving dynamics of car-based SUVs more to their liking. Four-wheel-drive XL-7s are equipped with a two-speed transfer case, however, allowing the Suzuki SUV to handle the rough stuff better than any of its car-based competitors. While the 2006 Suzuki XL-7 does offer seven-passenger seating and a reasonable price in a small package, it doesn't match up well with its segment competition. Compact SUVs like the Escape, CR-V and any number of other car-based SUVs are more refined and/or have more off-road capability. And if you really need three rows of seating in a compact package, we suggest looking at a small minivan like the Mazda5 or Caravan, either of which offers a more practical solution to this problem.

2006 Suzuki XL-7 models

The four-door Suzuki XL-7 is available in one trim level. The five-passenger base model is well equipped with power door locks and windows; remote keyless entry; heated mirrors; cruise control; automatic climate control; daytime running lights; an adjustable center armrest; a six-speaker stereo system with an MP3-compatible CD player; and tinted privacy glass. The seven-passenger version adds a two-person third-row seat plus rear air conditioning. The Premium package adds running boards, leather seating, foglights, a power sunroof, a seven-speaker audio system with in-dash CD changer and steering wheel-mounted audio controls.

2006 Highlights

For 2006, Suzuki has consolidated the XL-7's trim levels into base and Premium packages.

Performance & mpg

All Suzuki XL-7 models are equipped with a 2.7-liter V6 engine that produces 185 horsepower and 184 pound-feet of torque. A five-speed automatic transmission is standard. Fuel economy ratings are 17-18 mpg for city driving and 22 mpg on the highway -- about average for a truck-based compact SUV. Towing capacity is a respectable 3,000 pounds. Buyers have a choice between two-wheel drive and a part-time four-wheel-drive system with a dual-range transfer case.


The XL-7 comes standard with antilock brakes and a tire-pressure monitor, but neither side airbags nor stability control is available. NHTSA has not conducted crash tests on the Suzuki XL-7. In 40-mph frontal-offset crash testing conducted by the IIHS, the XL-7 earned a "Good" score (the highest possible).


The 2006 Suzuki XL-7 handles competently on- and off-road. Ride quality is decent for a truck-based SUV, but car-based SUVs have more refined road manners. The 185-horsepower V6 provides some initial off-the-line grunt, but it gets wheezy at higher engine speeds, particularly when climbing highway grades.


Equipped with the optional third-row seating, the Suzuki XL-7 can pack in seven passengers. It's not until you start shopping larger SUVs (with their larger price tags) that you'll find this feature. However, due to the smaller dimensions of this Suzuki SUV, legroom is very tight in both the second and third rows and there's little room for cargo with all the rear seats in use. With its third-row bench out of the way, the XL-7 offers up to 43.3 cubic feet of cargo capacity behind the second-row seats. Folding these seats opens up 75.1 cubic feet of space.

Consumer reviews

Read what other owners think about the Used 2006 Suzuki XL-7.

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Most helpful consumer reviews

4.88 out of 5 stars
XL-7 5-Passenger
4dr SUV (2.7L 6cyl 5A)
I have had my 2006 XL-7 for a month now, it is one solid SUV. I took a trip to Key West with a family of four and was very comfortable. I was pleasantly surprized at how quiet it rides. The interior with the woodgrain makes it look more expensive than what it is. I bought the 5-passengers model because I liked and wanted all the storage space. It's amazing how much it will hold. I have had numerous compliments on how nice it looks. I'm lovin' mine.
4.88 out of 5 stars
First SUV
4dr SUV w/3rd Row (2.7L 6cyl 5A)
I recently purchased my Suzuki XL-7 to pull my boat and move large items. I never owned an SUV before and was reluctant at first. However, after doing my research, I found the XL-7 to be the best buy on the market. It feels big yet is very responsive and easy to park in the city. It pulled my boat with plenty of power to spare. I love the fit and finish and it compared well to my Honda when it comes to quality and workmanship. I love the XL-7, it surpassed my expectations hands down.
4.38 out of 5 stars
Quite good SUV
frank fiore,03/06/2009
4dr SUV 4WD w/3rd Row (2.7L 6cyl 5A)
Vehicle mostly used for short trips averaging under 10 miles (averaging 20 mpg) but around 26 mpg on the long range 65 mph or faster trips. The car has excellent fit and finish, nice interior, decent sound system (car is intermediate (not premium) trim package but cloth seats are fairly comfortable. We have had no (none, nada!) maintenance problems. Car was a rental for the first year of its life so we have been pleasantly surprised at its reliability since we bought it at 30000 miles. Excellent paint job, rubber door trim and doors close with a nice solid thump! V-6 engine very quiet once warmed up.
3.75 out of 5 stars
Give it a chance! XL7 may work for you.
4dr SUV w/3rd Row (2.7L 6cyl 5A)
We got a great deal on '06 XL7 in 2010 with 37K miles as a '00 200K Honda Odyssey replacement. Wanted another, but Toyotas/Hondas too pricey even with 100K. The XL7 sounds and drives like a truck--worse than a car or minivan. Poor acceleration and gas mileage, averaging a paltry 17 city, 20 hwy. But so far, it has been bulletproof in terms of reliability at 72K miles. No problems whatsoever. With kids 11, 8, 7, we can still shoehorn 1-2 of them in the fold-down 3rd row. Long trips we flip down 1 side of 3rd row and take plenty of luggage. Vehicle is horrible in snow. 2-whl drive was a big mistake. Needs quality snow tires in winter. Buy a 4x4. Missing minivan, but XL7 is next best..


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
  • IIHS Small Overlap Front Test
    Not Tested
  • Moderate Overlap Front Test

More about the 2006 Suzuki XL-7

Used 2006 Suzuki XL-7 Overview

The Used 2006 Suzuki XL-7 is offered in the following submodels: XL-7 SUV. Available styles include Premium 4dr SUV (2.7L 6cyl 5A), 4dr SUV 4WD w/3rd Row (2.7L 6cyl 5A), 4dr SUV w/3rd Row (2.7L 6cyl 5A), 4dr SUV (2.7L 6cyl 5A), Premium 4dr SUV 4WD (2.7L 6cyl 5A), and 4dr SUV 4WD (2.7L 6cyl 5A). Pre-owned Suzuki XL-7 models are available with a 2.7 L-liter gas engine, with output up to 185 hp, depending on engine type. The Used 2006 Suzuki XL-7 comes with rear wheel drive, and four wheel drive. Available transmissions include: 5-speed automatic. The Used 2006 Suzuki XL-7 comes with a 3 yr./ 36000 mi. basic warranty, a 3 yr./ 36000 mi. roadside warranty, and a 7 yr./ 100000 mi. powertrain warranty.

What's a good price on a Used 2006 Suzuki XL-7?

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 Suzuki XL-7s are available in my area?

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Can't find a used 2006 Suzuki XL-7s you want in your area? Consider a broader search.

Find a used Suzuki XL-7 for sale - 6 great deals out of 10 listings starting at $9,681.

Find a used Suzuki for sale - 10 great deals out of 21 listings starting at $19,547.

Find a used certified pre-owned Suzuki XL-7 for sale - 5 great deals out of 17 listings starting at $19,994.

Find a used certified pre-owned Suzuki for sale - 3 great deals out of 12 listings starting at $11,636.

Should I lease or buy a 2006 Suzuki XL-7?

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 Suzuki lease specials
Check out Suzuki XL-7 lease specials