The Subaru Legacy GT, when it was launched, was a very successful car for Subaru back in 2005. A year later, Mazda decided to fire back with a hot-rodded version of their otherwise-milquetoast family sedan–the MazdaSpeed 6.
The MS-6 looked pretty similar at a glance to the lesser models from the side, save for the 18-inch rims and body kit, but at the front, things were a different story, with a gaping grille, covering up a powerful little turbocharged 2.3L straight four–the same one that did duty in the ‘Speed 3, with a whopping 274 bhp for 2006 and 270 for 2007. Underneath, Mazda added all-wheel-drive to the setup, along with higher-rated shocks, springs, and dampers.
Meanwhile, the driver recieved a great set of seats (cloth in the Sport and leather in the GT), and an optional navigation system and sunroof. This car was a great answer for the LGT at the time, and Car and Driver even recorded one hitting 60MPH in just 5.4 seconds–impressive credentials for something that was still capable of taking the kids to school.
Quite a few were sold in the USA, and the used car market is full of these little gems. Prices tend to start at about the same or a bit less than a similarly used Legacy GT. Expect to pay around $11-12K for a well-used one, or up to about 18-19 for one that’s been babied. I would likely pay about 15-16 for a decent one with a lot of life left in it. This car offers a great value for money, and a serious alternative to a Legacy GT on the used market.