Best Bet
  • (4.6) 44 reviews
  • Available Prices: $135–$14,703
  • Body Style: Station Wagon
  • Combined MPG: 17-24
  • Engine: 190-hp, 2.7-liter V-6 (regular gas)
  • Drivetrain: Rear-wheel Drive
2006 Dodge Magnum

Our Take on the Latest Model 2006 Dodge Magnum

What We Don't Like

  • Over-the-shoulder visibility
  • Liftgate position
  • Winter traction of base model without stability system
  • Intrusive, but valuable, stability system

Notable Features

  • RWD or AWD
  • V-6 or V-8
  • Available stability system
  • 17- or 18-inch wheels
  • New 425-hp SRT8 edition

2006 Dodge Magnum Reviews

Cars.com Expert Reviews

The 2006 Dodge Magnum is mostly unchanged from its 2005 debut year. These days everyone seems to want a vehicle with better fuel economy, but not everyone can get by with a compact car. Fortunately, within each vehicle class are models that are more efficient than others. Even within a model line, some drivetrain offerings can be more efficient than others. This is what drew me to the base Magnum, sometimes called the SE for ordering purposes.

Base trim levels often suffer anemic acceleration. Equipped with the smallest, 2.7-liter V-6 engine and a four- rather than a five-speed-automatic transmission, the 2006 Magnum has every reason to be a dog. To my surprise, it isn't, which proves once again that you shouldn't focus on the formula; results are what count.

The table below shows the Magnum trim levels and their associated engines and fuel-economy specs.

Dodge Magnum Fuel Data Compared
Trim LevelEngineEPA-Estimated
Fuel Economy
(city/highway, mpg)
Recommended
Gasoline Grade
Base (SE)190-hp,
2.7-liter V-6
21/28regular
unleaded
(87 octane)
SXT RWD250-hp,
3.5-liter V-6
19/27midgrade
unleaded
(89 octane)
SXT AWD250-hp,
3.5-liter V-6
18/24midgrade
unleaded
(89 octane)
RT RWD340-hp,
5.7-liter V-8 (Hemi)
17/25midgrade
unleaded
(89 octane)
RT AWD340-hp,
5.7-liter V-8 (Hemi)
17/23midgrade
unleaded
(89 octane)
SRT8425-hp,
6.1-liter V-8 (Hemi)
14/20premium
unleaded
(91 octane)
EPA and manufacturer data

The largest engine mates to a five-speed automatic, which is ironic because, in my experience, it's the lesser-powered engine that benefits from additional gears. This is why, having driven the 3.5-liter and V-8-powered models, I couldn't imagine the 2.7-liter having enough guts to propel this car. It's weighty in what I consider a good way: solid, substantial. In terms of curb weight, it's a relatively heavy 3,847 pounds. Still, the car is, at worst, modestly powered — at least when driven in and between Chicago and Detroit, where hills are virtually nonexistent.

The transmission is reasonably reactive, though I think it would be better if it kicked down more readily because the higher engine speeds are really needed for decent acceleration. It's hard to argue with the math, but in my estimation the rear-wheel-drive base Magnum isn't too far from the Magnum SXT AWD in real-world driving. The all-wheel drive adds 300 pounds to the car's weight, which eats away at the 3.5-liter's 60-horsepower advantage.

My test vehicle came with optional (at this trim level) ABS, which I recommend for any vehicle. Dodge teams it with traction control and an electronic stability system in a $1,025 option package. Some buyers might prefer to option the ABS alone at a lower price, but the stability feature is good to have with rear-wheel drive.

One of the challenges car reviewers face is gaining access to a model's lowest trim levels to see just how stripped-down they are. The automakers don't always make them available directly, not necessarily because they have something to hide, but because it's the reviewer's job to evaluate features, and we can't evaluate what isn't there.

This base version is easily as impressive as the higher trim levels I've tested, and maybe more so. With the exception of the faux aluminum trim — which plagues the higher trims and a regrettable majority of recent models from all automakers — the interior materials and seat fabric are good quality. The styling is there, the solidity is there and, all told, it feels like a helluva lot of car for $22,320.

Send Joe an email 


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Consumer Reviews

(4.6)

Average based on 44 reviews

Write a Review

Fun to drive

by Pues from on November 24, 2017

Comfortable family car and amazingly fast/fun to drive. Room enough for 8ft ladder and lots if space for taking kids to softball.

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5 Trims Available

Photo of undefined
Wondering which configuration is right for you?
Our 2006 Dodge Magnum trim comparison will help you decide.
 

Dodge Magnum Articles

2006 Dodge Magnum Safety Ratings

Crash-Test Reports

NHTSA Ratings

Based on Dodge Magnum Base

Overall Rollover Rating

NHTSA Ratings

Based on Dodge Magnum Base

Overall Rollover Rating
Driver's
Passenger's
Front Seat
Rear Seat
National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) is part of the U.S. Department of Transportation. NHTSA provides vehicle safety information such as front- and side-crash ratings and rollover ratings. Vehicles are rated using a star rating system from 1-5 stars, with 5 being the highest.

Recalls

There are currently 5 recalls for this car.


Safety defects and recalls are relatively common. Stay informed and know what to do ahead of time.

Safety defects and recalls explained

Service & Repair

Estimated Service & Repair cost: $4,400 per year.

Save on maintenance costs and do your own repairs.

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