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6 Great Used Wagons Under $20,000 for 2019

While Americans’ automotive tastes have shifted to SUVs in recent years, the classic station wagon remains a bit of a well-kept secret. Offering the efficiencies of a car with the practicality of an SUV, the station wagon’s lack of popularity is almost a crime, and as a result, wagons don’t experience quite the success of SUVs and sedans here in the U.S. Still, there are good used wagons out there for any budget, and here we’ve listed six that make great options for anyone looking to spend around $20,000 on a vehicle.

Subaru Outback

2015-2018 Subaru Outback

A list of great used wagons should probably start with the Subaru Outback. The Outback is the most popular wagon on the market, with over 100,000 sold every year since 2011. Offering the benefits of an SUV combined with the day-to-day livability of a simple sedan, the Outback is the best of a few different worlds. Additionally, its standard all-wheel drive and great available safety features give owners excellent peace of mind. Outback buyers have two engines to choose from. On the low end is a 2.5-liter 4-cylinder putting out 173 horsepower and returning up to 28 miles per gallon combined. The larger engine is a 3.6-liter V6 making 256 hp and achieving only 22 mpg combined. There are currently over 900 2015-2018 Subaru Outbacks to choose from on Autotrader for $20,000 or less. Find a Subaru Outback for sale

2015-2018 Volkswagen Golf Sportwagen

2015-2018 Volkswagen Golf Sportwagen

The Golf Sportwagen is an elongated version of Volkswagen’s legendary Golf hatchback, offering more cargo space in an attractive, long-roof design. Prior to the launch of the seventh generation Golf, which came out for the 2015 model year, the Sportwagen was referred to as the Jetta Sportwagen. Power comes courtesy of a 1.8-liter turbocharged 4-cylinder making 170 hp and mated to either a 5-speed manual or a 6-speed automatic. Four-wheel traction is available courtesy of VW’s 4Motion all-wheel-drive system. Overall, the Sportwagen offers an upscale interior with many clever design elements, along with an infotainment system offering Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, and a good assortment of active safety features. On Autotrader, there are currently around 700 2015-2018 Golf SportWagens for sale for around $20,000 with 81 of them coming with all-wheel drive. Find a Volkswagen Golf Sportwagen for sale

Volkswagen Golf Alltrack

2017-2018 Volkswagen Golf Alltrack

If you think the Alltrack looks a lot like the Golf Sportwagen, you aren’t wrong, as the Alltrack is essentially a lifted version of the Sportwagen with body cladding added to give it a more rugged look, along with a few silver accents on the bumper, rocker panels and mirror caps. Every Alltrack comes with standard AWD, although with only 6.65 inches of ground clearance, an off-roader it is not. Obviously intended to compete with the Outback, the Alltrack is probably a better on-road performer than the Subaru, and offers a nicer interior, while the Outback’s more generous ground clearance will give it a leg up in the rough stuff. Right now on Autotrader there are around 50 2017 or 2018 Golf Alltracks listed for around $20,000, 16 of which come with a 6-speed manual transmission. Find a Volkswagen Golf Alltrack for sale

BMW 3-Series Wagon

2008-2015 BMW 3-Series Wagon

While it’s popular throughout Europe, the BMW 3-Series wagon finds itself in a niche market in the United States. Still, BMW continued to offer it here for years to the small percentage of 3-Series customers who love the wagon body style. Fifth-generation 2008-2011 models, known as the 328i, come with a 3.0-liter inline 6-cylinder putting out 231 hp and 200 lb-ft of torque. For the 2012-2015 model years, from the 3-Series’ sixth-generation, buyers can choose between the 328i, which in this case offers a 2.0-liter 4-cylinder turbo putting out 240 hp and 260 lb-ft of torque paired with either rear- or AWD, or the 328d, which comes with a 4-cylinder turbodiesel that puts out 180 hp and 280 lb-ft of torque and comes with AWD. As practical as they are, 3-Series wagons are hard to come by, and including listings covering the 2008 through 2015 model years, there are still only about 100 listed for around $20,000. Find a BMW 3 Series Wagon for sale

Audi A4 Allroad

2013-2016 Audi A4 Allroad

Like a luxurious Subaru Outback, the Audi A4 Allroad takes a normal A4 wagon, which Audi stopped selling in the U.S. after the 2012 model year, raises the suspension by an inch and a half, and adds extra body cladding and roof rails to give the whole thing a rugged look. Power comes from a 2.0-liter turbocharged 4-cylinder putting out 220 hp and 258 lb-ft of torque, sent to all four wheels through an 8-speed automatic transmission. The A4 Allroad offers good handling and a nice interior — everything you’d expect from a German luxury car. Right now on Autotrader, there are about 100 2013-2016 A4 Allroads for sale for around $20,000. Find an Audi A4 allroad for sale

Volvo V60

2015-2018 Volvo V60 & V60 Cross Country

The V60 is the wagon variant of the Volvo S60, and the V60 Cross Country is the lifted, ruggedized version of the regular V60. Power comes courtesy of a turbocharged 2.0 liter 4-cylinder engine making 240 hp and 258 lb-ft of torque, routed via an eight-speed automatic transmission to just the front wheels in the V60 or to all four in the V60 Cross Country. Although dimensions are a little tight, both vehicles are available with a good array of tech features, and the V60 earned a Top Safety Pick+ designation from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. On Autotrader, there are currently over 100 2015-2018 Volvo V60s and 50 V60 Cross Country models for sale for around $20k. Find a Volvo V60 for sale

Chris O'Neill
Chris O'Neill
Chris O'Neill is an author specializing in competitive analysis, consumer recommendations, and adventure-driven enthusiast content. A lifelong car enthusiast, he worked in the auto industry for a bit, helping Germans design cars for Americans, and now lives in Salt Lake City, Utah. He runs an Instagram account, @MountainWestCarSpotter, which in his own words is "actually pretty good", and has a... Read More about Chris O'Neill

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