A Philadelphia Craigslist ad caught our eye with its photos of a Ford Excursion crashed into a bank lobby, but that’s probably the least weird chapter of this SUV’s history, which involves an arrest, lasers and Snoop Dogg. Not to mention being run into by a drunk driver and somehow sustaining zero damage, dragging a repo tow truck down a street, having a door get shoved into a fender by another car, and—of course—driving through a bank window. This truck has been through it all.
The seller gets straight to the elephant in the room, addressing why photos show the Excursion sitting in a pile of broken bank-window glass, with the main point apparently being that the buyer should be aware that the truck has a ding from an Automated Teller Machine:
2004 - Drove @ 15mph through a TD Bank front window & glass doors into the bank lobby and smashed into a ATM Machine, so the front bumper has the 2 inch indent pinch from the corner of the ATM machine.
Here’s a picture of that poor ATM:
These are some downright strange photos to include in a sale listing—especially the pictures of people posing in front of the crash scene.
Though I must admit, the peculiar pictures are compelling me to write an article about the listing, so perhaps perhaps it was all part of a big strategy.
But the Craigslist post gets weirder, somehow, as the seller describes the Excursion’s long crash history, beginning with this totally unbelievable story about a drunk driver ruining her car, but not causing any damage whatsoever to the Excursion:
2.) A drunk lady hit me in the rear bumper when I was at a stop sign. I had no damage, her car was totaled, and her engine & hood went thru her front window.... about 2008
I”ll repeat that last bit: “I had no damage, her car was totaled, and her engine & hood went thru her front window.”
Listen, I’m not a crash test engineer, but I’ve got a pretty decent understanding of yield strengths and the stresses seen in inelastic vehicle collisions—then again, maybe this person was driving an Austin Mini.
But the listing doesn’t stop being baffling there, with the writer going on to describe how he drove the Excursion off a tow truck and actually dragged the rig after its driver tried to repossess the giant Ford:
A tow truck falsely tried to repo it, so I drove it off his tow truck, and I dragged the tow truck a bit. My back bumper was raised about 1 inch.... about 2009. The photos on the tow truck, are of the truck returning from Police in 2009, the exhaust system was replaced after & the truck was self-painted several times.
But that’s not the only abuse this poor Excursion has endured, with a dually inflicting some damage to the truck’s steering. The seller writing this long-winded description of the incident:
A duley-truck (pick up truck with 6 wheels) ... his 6th wheel in the rear, hit my driver-side tire when I was parked. My tire was pointing to the left. I think he had some minor damage, maybe to his rear-quarter panel. I didn’t see a scratch on my tire, so I said... I have no damage, so we don’t need to call the police, nor get insurance involved. When I was on my way home I noticed, the steering was off by maybe 2 inches. This is from a “steering tie-rod” in the front being moved, and is still the same today... the steering wheel points to about 2:00 o’clock to drive straight.
I’m not sure why he puts “steering tie-rod” in quotes. Perhaps he doesn’t believe in tie rods, considering them to be mythical steering components? Or perhaps he thinks this whole thing is just a conspiracy, and that there are bigger forces at play causing his steering wheel to be off by 60 degrees than simply a “tie rod.”
But there’s more, of course. The driver’s side front fender has been through the wringer after a car ran into his ajar door (every car driver’s nightmare). In his description, the seller is, once again, rather garrulous:
I was parked on the side of the road, with my door open about 3 inches, and a lady drove into my driver side door in Dec 2012. The driver-side door got pushed forward into the front-quarter panel. The quarter panel moved out so there is a gap in the hood about 1 inch. The bolts need to be loosened and the quarter panel needs to be moved back to even the gap in the hood. The same with the hood... of the 4 bolts on the hood, 2 were tight, & I didn’t want to strip the bolt, so I stopped working on it.
The ad goes on, mentioning how the door incident—along with the bank incident (the seller mentions the specific bank, “TD Bank,” for some reason)—caused some issues with a light, which the seller tried to fix with “like 5 different glues”:
The quarter panel also pushed forward into the light assemble.... plus with TD Bank accident, it needs a new kit for $30. The assembly holds the light to the grill & front engine compartment. It is made from plastic. It needs to be replaced. I tried to repair the plastic cracks in the assembly with “liquid nails glue” but the glue didn’t hold to the plastic. What would work is a “Fiber-glass repair kit”, the 2 part liquid mix + fiberglass ...but, the cost for a “Fiber-glass repair kit” is about $35 dollars, ....and a new light assembly frame is cheaper at $30.... so, it just needs to be bought off google... and you might as well also get a entire new LED lights... because also both front lights have broken plastic parts also where it attaches to the plastic light mount. I tried like 5 different glues to fix it but it breaks about every year.
Apparently this Excursion is a former Enterprise rental car that—by the looks of it—has been treated like it never left the fleet. The seller says the SUV, which has—again, strangely—had a “New Paint Job every year since 2007, with about 20 spray cans of paint each time,” has been sitting since late 2012. That means the gas is bad, though the truck’s 5.4-liter V8 will apparently fire if it gets good fuel.
Also, for some odd reason, the seller has written at the bottom of the post that this truck is basically invincible:
Bullet Proof + Bomb Proof + Accident Proof:
1/4 thick steel body all around
1/4 inch thick steel seat inserts & undercarriage.
The photos, like the one above (which makes me wonder why anyone trying to sell a car would not just like, take the floor mat off the hood) appear to show a standard Excursion with normal-gauge sheetmetal, so I’m not sure what he meant by this “Bomb Proof” statement.
Attempting to understand this Craigslist post describing an ex-rental Excursion that’s been rammed into a bank, hit but totally unharmed by a drunk driver’s now totally wrecked car and driven off a repo trailer, seems an uphill battle. Like, what’s with this photo?
Why are there X’s over the Odyssey, Rav4 and Yukon? And why is there an arrow pointing to the Excursion? Who was actually going to mix these vehicles up?
I rang up Matt Falcon, the seller, to try to understand this madness, while I learned that some of the listing is a bit exaggerated, things somehow got even stranger.
The reason, Falcon told me over the phone, for the post being so in-depth, is that he wants to be 100 percent forthcoming. “I just don’t want to waste my time meeting someone at the house,” he told me, “and then them having a surprise.” As for the photos in front of the bank, Falcon said simply: “Yeah, I guess somehow had a camera, so we started taking pictures.”
He did walk back the “1/4 inch thick steel” thing a bit, too. “It’s a thicker steel than an average car—the steel on the doors. It’s somewhere between 1/8 of an inch and 1/4 of an inch. And inside the seats is steel plates.” (I maintain that 1/8-inch is insane for any car’s body—unless, maybe, at a pinch flange)
He also walked back the drunk-driver accident description a bit. “Her hood was like, bent in half completely,” he told me. “And I guess her engine busted through the firewall like down near the brake pedals.” He admitted the motor didn’t go through windshield. “It got pushed back towards the gas pedals, and the hood went through her windshield.”
That seems more believable than the engine going through the windshield, and his truck being completely unscathed. He also explained that hilarious picture of the crossed-out Odyssey, Rav4 and Yukon, saying simply: “At the time I made the ad, I didn’t have that many photos, so I just threw that one in there.”
But don’t for a second think this post has lost its weirdness, because Falcon’s description of the repo towing incident is absurd.
Apparently a tow truck driver claimed to have a work order to have the Excursion towed, despite the fact that Falcon owned the car outright. Falcon refused to give the SUV up, and hopped behind the wheel. “I put the car in four-wheel drive,” he told me, “and then I floored it, then I put it in reverse, smashed into him, and then I floored it, and then I drug him down the street...I actually got arrested.”
In the end, police apparently dropped all charges, and Falcon was able to sue the bank for damages, though the cops weren’t thrilled with Falcon’s decision to actually tow the tow truck, with the Craigslist seller describing that part, saying: “I literally drug the truck; like I started to pull the truck...then eventually I broke through, I broke his chains.”
The truck apparently has an even wilder history than its ex-rental status and its violent accident history suggest. Falcon, who owns company Laserlightshow.org, says the vehicle shined lasers high into the sky during the Projekt Revolution music fest in 2004.
“It’s actually been on tour with Snoop Dogg and Linkin Park,” he told me. “The truck actually toured all over America. We put the lasers on the roof, and we would do a laser show.” Those lasers apparently projected advertisements; here’s a look at the truck in action:
So basically, if you’ve got $3,500 and you’re looking for an ex-rental Excursion that’s been rattle-canned, that’s shined lasers during a music fest, that’s towed a repo tow truck, that’s been driven through a bank window and that’s been able to withstand a ridiculous rear impact by a drunk driver, this Excursion—the one in the corner, not the Odyssey, Rav4 or Yukon—is your truck.
Saying about his vehicle that still runs and drives (with good gas), Falcon said “It’s a tank.”
All Photos by Matt Falcon