in Life, Richmond

This car runs: Love letter to a 1997 Honda Accord

Close-up photos of a very well-loved dark green 1997 Honda Accord

Three years ago I sold my 1997 Honda Accord DX. Here’s the Craigslist ad love letter I wrote to it.

1997 Honda Accord DX – 4dr, automatic – This car runs. – $500 (Richmond, VA)

1997 Honda Accord DX
4 door
4 cylinders
206,193 miles
Color: “Eucalyptus green pearl” aka the color and year that paint sucks for Accords. See also: every other 1997 Honda Accord in eucalyptus green pearl that has thinning paint.

This car runs. I’m the second owner and have had this car since I was 16. I’m 33 now. We have truly had some TIMES together. I have laughed, cried, kissed, hugged, hollered, sang, sweated, shivered, and felt all possible feelings in this car. This car has carried all my friends, half my family, all my shit, and any number of other things. This car has moved my worldly possessions at least eleven times. This car has driven through rain, snow, sun, heat, cold, wind and high water. It’s visited most states east of the Mississippi. It knows the highways of the South well.

condition: fair
cylinders: 4
cylinders drive: fwd
fuel: gas

This car was my constant when everything else changed, but now I am ready to move on. My sweetie and I have moved in together and are ready to be a single-car household (with a newer Honda, natch). I’m not crying, YOU’RE crying.

This car runs. I would not put this car on the interstate without a look from a mechanic. City driving? Car-about-town? Absolutely. It sounds like it needs a new muffler (that would be its…fifth? muffler?). It was last inspected December 2016. I think it would pass inspection with only a couple hundred bucks’ worth of work. Or maybe it would pass without the work. I don’t know. I’m not a mechanic. But my mechanics at Edwards Auto Care on Cleveland and Broad LOVE this car and assure me it’ll last another 200k miles. It’s a Honda so I believe them. (The folks at Edwards have been good to me, so if you end up with this car I hope you’ll go to see them, too.)

1997 Honda Accord
odometer: 206193
paint color: green
size: midsize
title status: clean
transmission: automatic
type: sedan

Are you looking for a car that’s not that “”smart””? That doesn’t connect to any kind of cloud computer and doesn’t make decisions for you or warn you of imminent danger? That’s this car. It has aftermarket cruise control installed and it’s on its third stereo. BONUS: this stereo takes an aux-in cable so you can listen to your phone. Bluetooth? LOL. No.

Are you looking for a car you’ll never get locked out of? This car can’t lock all the way. The rear driver-side door doesn’t lock. To prove its point, the lock thingy broke off in my hand a couple years ago. Touche, car. When I park it I just act like it can lock and confidently walk away. I don’t leave valuables in it.

Speaking of security features: this car has two sets of keys. One unlocks the doors, the other starts the engine. This is a feature, not a bug.

Are you looking for a car that looks like it has 4 working doors, but only has 3? That’s this car. The rear passenger side door hasn’t opened since 2006. Why bother? That is the LEAST-used door anyway. One less thing to worry about.

One time I was buying a John Mayer CD at the K-mart in Prattville, AL, and when I came out this car had a dent in the front left panel. I never went to a K-Mart again and I no longer like John Mayer’s music. The dent is still there. There are some other scratches and scrapes on the bumpers which I’m pretty sure are my fault. The car runs fine.

This car has driven the length of I-85 more times than I can count. It’s never lived north of the Mason-Dixon and maybe it never will? I’m guessing the underside of the car is FINE because it hasn’t lived in a place where a city knows how to salt its roads (side-eyeing you, Richmond!).

I only got pulled over in this car once. I was 17 and I just got a warning. Somehow, miraculously, I have never been in an accident in this car either. May this good luck extend to you.

This car is what Kelly Blue Book would define as FAIR. I think it has a lot more life left in it with a new owner who will love it.

My dad bought this car from a 23-year-old divorcee in Wetumpka, AL, in 2001 for $10,300. Now, 150,000 miles and 17 years later, I’m asking for $500. WHAT A STEAL.

I’ll accept a lower offer if you tell me a good story about a car that meant a lot to you. I am also good and ready to give this car to the radio station and write it off on my damn taxes if y’all lowball me, so whatever.

Text me, don’t call. No lowballs, no slimeballs, if the ad is still up the car’s still available. I love you and thank you for reading this far.

UPDATE: My sweetie just returned from the grocery store and informed me that in an effort to park in the shade she bumper tapped the front of my car. It still runs fine.


A couple days after posting this ad, I got a VERY sweet, very long email from a college sophomore who had just had her wisdom teeth out. She spun an epic painkiller-induced yarn about her family’s old car. “Can you come by tomorrow?” I asked. “I’m getting married this afternoon.” It was a Thursday. On Friday the buyer and her dad came by with their standard poodle in tow and a bottle of champagne for us. They had called Edwards Auto Care who had lovingly vouched for the car. They gave the car a test run and decided to buy. It was a sweet farewell.