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Seeking advice on 2006 Wagon (non turbo)


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I'm looking at a 2006 legacy wagon :wub:, OEM, with just under 40,000 miles. My concern is that even through that is very low for the year, that the age alone is a reason to avoid it. I had a 99 outback with a failed head gasket before and I don't want to go through that again.


Seller is asking for $10K which I think is too much. How much would you offer assuming everything is fine with the car? (it appears to have recently passed the state safety inspection and emissions within the year).


Edit to add some more info: I've always been a wagon guy- I've had two 1987 Toyota Cressida Wagons, the fancy looking '99 Legacy-Outback with the hood scoop but no turbo, and now the clock is running out on my '05 Saab 9-2X Linear (which as most people know is actually just a rebranded Impreza wagon). Clearly I am not in need of anything with a ton of power, but I love the low wagon style and having AWD is really nice. I've had eyes on the 05/06 Legacy Wagons for a long time, but I'm not sure if getting a 13 year old car now is a good idea. Although, I did buy my 2nd Cressida Wagon in 2004 with, so that was 17 years old with 87,000 miles at the time, but I already had one (with over double the mileage) and was more familiar with the issues and comfortable with fixing it myself.


I guess what I am really asking is at what price would the 06 Legacy Wagon be a good value? Given your knowledge of what things can and do fail on that car over time.

Edited by mikebw
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Anything over $5K is goofy. The age of that cars bushings will start to get you. You could get a MUCH better car with $10K.

Try an H6. Timing chains-not belt. HG issues are not frequent.

Downside I didn't realize till after I got my 3.0 is 91 Octane gas is needed.

RIP 96 Legacy 2.2 4EAT lost reverse @ 374,000 miles
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Certainly looking on edmunds.com or similar, that price seems a bit out of line. However, looking through cars.com at comparables, it's not out of line with what folks are asking for 05-08 Legacy GTs - there aren't many wagons, the ones I saw are

07 sedan with 70k miles for $13850

05 sedan with 97k miles for $8450

08 sedan with 94k miles for $13999

05 sedan with 88k miles for $9999

06 sedan with 97k miles for $3000

05 wagon with 65k miles for $10999

05 sedan with 65k miles for $5798

05 sedan with 88k miles for $7781


Now asking is different than getting, but $10k as a starting point for an 05 wagon with really low miles isn't out of line based on cars.com, considering the rarity of the wagon.


It is a 13-14 year old car, so some things will be wearing out due to age, but if it's been cared for, not heavily modified and brought back to stock, etc., it should be ok...


Now I don't know that I would spend that much money on one, but who knows.


too bad it wasn't this one - I'd pay $10k for this one...



but it's sold.

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Yeah, wow that white one was awesome! Would have been out of my price range at the moment however as my spouse and I have agreed to keep this purchase under $10K.


Thanks for the price comparisons. I think my biggest concern is getting it and then finding out it needs new head gaskets within a couple years. From what I understand about the HG issue, if maintenance is kept up that it should not become a problem. So the big unknown is if it has been maintained well.

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I have an 06 Outback Ltd, 211K miles, the HG's were replaced at 167K by the dealer and this car came with every service record, from tires, to wiper blades. Car still runs great and has not given me that much trouble. That price is very high, get them down with cash, like 6500 and know you would have to put some money into it. But look around.
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I know you said you weren't after power but I paid $10900 for my recently acquired '09 LGT (sedan) with 54k on it. I don't feel I did too bad for the miles/condition.


I agree $10k sounds high for that wagon but as stated already....it's a starting point. Research known issues and required maintenance and bargain away.


Sent from my moto z3 using Tapatalk

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I've seen head gaskets fail anywhere from 85,000 miles through 130,000 miles. Really depends on how the car is driven. Lots of frequent short trips cause lots of heating cycles. This in turn wears out the gasket which is a single layer. I just payed $7,000 for an '08 LGT with 78,000 miles so $10k is quite high. Timing belt is due every 105k miles or 8 years so it's overdue. Hg's will start leaking oil no matter what. Turbo's are less prone to hg leaks.


Front lower control arm bushings are most likely torn and separating at this age so plan on replacing those.


The exhaust y-pipe will rot out at the y weld so that will need replacing. Hard to tell when but salt plays a big part in wear.


Sent from my SM-N950U using Tapatalk

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Great info there guys thanks again.


I realize that I would be buying essentially the same engine as I have right now in my 05 Saab 9-2X linear (EJ253), which had the HGs replaced around 137K miles, this was done somewhat preventatively, but I expect I would be in for a similar experience with this 06 Legacy Wagon unless I did things differently...


I have seen somewhere that changing the coolant was critical in preventing deterioration of the gasket internally; that over time the anti-corrosive additives which help prevent the various engine metals from reacting with each other break down and are no longer effective. Has that been consistent with the experiences of anyone here? Is that even relevant to this engine?


What can be done about preserving the HG from external leaks?


I might not have time to deal with this before the new year but I'll definitely let you all know if I wind up bringing it home!

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Heh, so I emailed the dealer about the car, told him my concerns with it's age and offered $6500 as a starting point. He wrote back and basically dismissed my concerns saying-


"Keep in mind this is a very very low mileage vehicle, one owner, clean carfax report and title. The vehicle has also been VA state inspected and serviced by us." ... and then goes on to say I will love it if I just come give it a drive.


I wrote back reiterating my point about deferred maintenance, the timing belt in particular, and asked if he could send me the carfax report, their maintenance records and the VA report. No response, I think I scared him off?


Honestly, if he can prove it has been well maintained I would talk it up closer to their ask but he doesn't seem willing to budge so far.

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They'll sit on it. If it's a dealer, they have a certain amount of money in it. They probably have $6500 - 7000 in it if they have it advertised for that price.


One of two things happened: The Used Car Manager fucked up and bought the car for too much, OR they bought the car for too much to close another sale on a new car.


It doesn't happen too often, but it does happen. $10K is silly money for that car since it's a non-GT model. $7k is the absolute max that car should really go for.

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the car is 12 years old and here let me share a video of a Subaru that is 3 years older that came in for inspection at South Main Auto...



mind you that is a salt state but still old cars = unseen issues and head gasket issues remained for that model year (2006) as well since it is the same motor...

Edited by YeuEmMaiMai
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