It’s extremely hard to be funny in the written word, so much so that you should probably not even try. Which makes this Craigslist ad all the more remarkable, because it is very funny. So much so that we’re contravening an unofficial Jalopnik policy of not posting Zany Craigslist Ads to this website.
First, the ad in full. It has been taken down from Craigslist but you can still view in its original glory on the Wayback Machine. It’s title was, “1999 Toyota Corolla — Fine AF.” The text:
You want a car that gets the job done? You want a car that’s hassle free? You want a car that literally no one will ever compliment you on? Well look no further.
The 1999 Toyota Corolla.
Let’s talk about features.
Fancy wheels: nope
Rear view camera: nope...but it’s got a transparent rear window and you have a fucking neck that can turn.
Let me tell you a story. One day my Corolla started making a strange sound. I didn’t give a shit and ignored it. It went away. The End.
You could take the engine out of this car, drop it off the Golden Gate Bridge, fish it out of the water a thousand years later, put it in the trunk of the car, fill the gas tank up with Nutella, turn the key, and this puppy would fucking start right up.
This car will outlive you, it will outlive your children.
Things this car is old enough to do:
Consent to sex: yes
Rent a car: it IS a car
This car’s got history. It’s seen some shit. People have done straight things in this car. People have done gay things in this car. It’s not going to judge you like a fucking Volkswagen would.
This car’s exterior color is gray, but it’s interior color is grey.
In the owner’s manual, oil is listed as “optional.”
When this car was unveiled at the 1998 Detroit Auto Show, it caused all 2,000 attendees to spontaneously yawn. The resulting abrupt change in air pressure inside the building caused a partial collapse of the roof. Four people died. The event is chronicled in the documentary “Bored to Death: The Story of the 1999 Toyota Corolla”
You wanna know more? Great, I had my car fill out a Facebook survey.
Favorite food: spaghetti
Favorite tv show: Alf
Favorite band: tie between Bush and the Gin Blossoms
This car is as practical as a Roth IRA. It’s as middle-of-the-road as your grandpa during his last Silver Alert. It’s as utilitarian as a member of a church whose scripture is based entirely on water bills.
When I ran the CarFax for this car, I got back a single piece of paper that said, “It’s a Corolla. It’s fine.”
Let’s face the facts, this car isn’t going to win any beauty contests, but neither are you. Stop lying to yourself and stop lying to your wife. This isn’t the car you want, it’s the car you deserve: The fucking 1999 Toyota Corolla.
The ad is the work of Jason Hlavenka, a Houston resident who decided to reluctantly unload the Corolla after it had, more or less, outlived its usefulness, he told Jalopnik in an email. Oh, and also a little thing called safety:
The original plan was to keep this car forever. I had visions of gradually restoring it to its original glory in a rented garage and then unveiling the car to my extremely disappointed daughter when she turned 16. My plan changed after my wife came across a youtube video of a head-on crash test between a 1999 corolla and 2015 corolla. As you can imagine, ‘99 corollas are basically death traps by today’s safety standards, and for the safety of our kids, she insisted we get a new car...safety of our kids, mind you, not me.
Hlavenka first posted the car on eBay motors earlier this month, asking $2,500 for it, which he says was probably a bit steep. Getting no takers, he said he decided to “try a different approach” on Craigslist. Initially, that didn’t work either, and he ended up selling it for $1,700 to someone via the for-sale sign on the car.
Then, the Craigslist ad blew up, going viral thanks to this guy’s tweet:
The timing is never quite what you want it to be, seeing as how Hlavenka probably could’ve got more than $1,700 out of the Corolla post-internet fame.
“I’m not a writer or comedian, but I did start a Twitter account @TheCorollaGuy so famous people can reach out and offer to buy me new Corollas,” he said. “That’s how Twitter works, right?”
Below, the Corolla in all its glory: