Here's a Craigslist ad that will restore your faith in humanity. It features a 15 year-old Toyota 4Runner that is not only meticulously maintained, but has a detailed, honest description with high quality photos that rivals that of most professional car dealers. Ladies and gentlemen, this is how you sell a car.

This 1999 Toyota 4Runner SR5 resides in one of the most grueling and taxing automotive environments known to man - New York City. It's completed more than 180,000 miles without so much as a cough, due to its seller's stellar (and likely paranoid) maintenance schedule.

For all you budding car salespeople out there, follow the lead of this ad. Post detailed pictures, be meticulous in your description, and be available for prospective clients. For a more detailed guide, check out the article in which I lay out 10 common sense tips for selling a car online.


According to the seller's description, here's what has been completed:

Service done in the last 30,000 miles:

  • Oil Change Castrol GTX
  • Entire Brake system overhaul
  • Brake Master Cylinder replaced
  • New rear brake lines
  • New pads, rotors, calipers
  • New rear drums, shoes (shoes adjusted), rear brake wheel cylinders
  • Brake Fluid Flush
  • Front and rear tires replaced less than 15k ago
  • Transfer Case Front Output Seal (Gasket replaced)
  • Rear driver side axle seal pressed in (passenger side done less than 35k ago)
  • Rear driver wheel bearing pressed in
  • Transfer Case Front Output Seal (Gasket replaced)
  • Timing Belt and Water Pump was performed less than 50,000 miles ago.
  • New duralast gold battery.
  • Coolant drain and fill.
  • New koyo radiator.
  • MAF sensor cleaned.
  • Throttle body cleaned.
  • New air filter.

The car also had spark plugs changed at 152k. However, 5VZ-FE engine has a waste spark ignition system, so included with the sale are 6 Denso spark plugs, which I planned to change at 182k. I have receipts and service records for above maintenance.The car was mainly a commuter car to Montvale NJ daily (80 miles round-trip), and a monthly drive to Buffalo NY.


The tape around the trim before polishing is something you'll likely never see again from a Craigslist seller, and a dead giveaway that this car was loved. Larry Kosilla would be proud.


The more than fair asking price of $4300 or Best Offer is a small price to pay for this level of dependability, practicality, and peace of mind. I'd buy it. Hell, I probably will.

Tavarish is the founder of APiDA Online and writes about buying and selling cool cars on the internet. He owns the world's cheapest Mercedes S-Class, a graffiti-bombed Lexus, and he's the only Jalopnik author that has never driven a Miata. He also has a real name that he didn't feel was journalist-y enough so he used a pen name and this was the best he could do.