This letter presents a sub-6 GHz cost-effective wideband dual-polarized plane wave generator (PWG) design for the fifth-generation (5G) base station over-the-air test. The proposed nonuniform PWG design is composed of 256 elements and has a dimension of 1.7 m × 1.7 m. Several novel strategies are proposed and implemented to reduce the cost and complexity. To reduce the feeding network complexity and mutual coupling among PWG elements, a novel tapered amplitude-only excitation method (i.e., with the same relative phase excitations among all PWG elements) is proposed. To reduce the number of channels in the phase and amplitude control network, a four-element subarray is applied. Furthermore, the wideband PWG element design and nonuniform configuration are applied to support for ultrawideband operations from 2 to 5 GHz. The proposed PWG design is numerically simulated and experimentally validated. A cylindrical quiet zone of a diameter of 0.9 m and a depth of 0.9 m, with 2.1 m distance to the PWG, is achieved in the measurement for the considered bandwidth, with the typical peak-to-peak E-field amplitude and phase variations less than ±1.25 dB and ±7.5°, respectively, which demonstrated its effectiveness and robustness.