[ARM] Automation RestoMod Chapter 29: Natasha (Final results out!)

OK, considering that a lot of major challenges have ended now, that I have some days off and the timespan for 24h, I feel like I can pull this off now…




Somewhere in rural Archana, a newborn boy is brought home through the harsh weather in a 1949 ARVA P21 Nachalnyk. It is getting a bit old, a bit rough around the edges, but the young family is proud of their P21, which they have nicknamed "Natasha". Here in pre-revolution Archana, car ownership isn't something everyone can enjoy, and being able to get their hands on this after some hard work was a great relief for them.


Davyd Ivaschenko is now 9 years old. The ARVA P21 Nachalnyk is now very much older, at 33 years. The family finally has gotten the possibility to buy a brand new Mara Irena, and of course, that car still feels miles apart from the old ARVA, even if it could not be compared to some foreign automobiles (which were few and far apart anyway). Yet, there is so much nostalgia in the P21 Nachalnyk, so Valentyn, the father, just could not get rid of it. He keeps on giving it some fresh gasoline, some air in the tyres and takes it for a spin every now and then just to keep things in condition.


Davyd is now 17 years old, the Archanan revolution is in full rage, and he has managed to get his hands on an used Clive Prisma 48K computer from a contact he has managed to get in Hetvesia. Of course, getting games for a somewhat ancient Hetvesian computer is not an easy task in Archana. Getting his hands on some manuals, he has decided to try to program them himself, and well, let's just say that they evolved rather quickly from simple text based games, via gruesome X-rated stick figure stuff, to something that was actually playable. He manages to convince some of his friends to also get Clive Prisma's, that could be had for not too much money if you looked outside Archana. One of them even manages to get a modem. Together, they form a demo/cracking group called "Bytemare". Suddenly being (yet rather illegal) distributors of the few commercial shovelware games still released for the Clive Prisma, writing games on your own wasn't a top priority anymore, but Davyd never gave up the dream, and kept experimenting.


Davyd now has a drivers license. Being offered the P21 from his father, he turned the offer down. Sure, the car was kind of nostalgia for him too, but an early ARVA was probably the last vehicle young people wanted to be seen in, post revolution. Even a Primus Urbano stole...eh, imported from Hetvesia was going to give more street cred back then.


The members of Bytemare now had upgraded their Clive Prismas to the more modern Admiral Lolita 5000 computer. At the moment, nobody knows that in a little more than a year, Admiral computers will become bankrupt. Davyd manages to create a pinball simulation for the machine with physics that nobody has ever seen before, and while reaching out for software houses just for fun, Bytemare actually manages to get a contract. The demo group Bytemare is now dead, now they start working full time on developing games, changing their name to Binary Dreams. The pinball game, "Lucid Flippers", is nothing but a money printing machine, but now they have to experience being "on the other end", realizing that without cracker groups they could earn even more money on their games...


Archana really isn't the right place to run the ever growing Binary Dreams company from. Davyd, as well as the whole company, moves over to Gasmea. Yet, he keeps visiting his parents in Archana every summer, and using the P21 as his mode of personal transportation when getting back there. Now, it should be said that recieving not much more than fresh fuel, air in the tyres and a new battery and oil every now and then, it has started to show some real wear and tear over the ages.


Davyd starts to feel that enough is enough. BinD Entertainment, as the company now is called, is now a large, worldwide game developer, and.... all the magic is lost. He decides to withdraw from the company, sell a lot of his stock in it, move back to Archana for an early retirement. Valentyn is getting old now, and actually, is not in shape to give Natasha a much needed restoration. It is now many years since it was last started, there has been more modern cars, in better shape, available for Davyd to use while being home in Archana.

The times have of course changed. Being seen in pre-revolution cars is no longer a shame, and…restored P20-series ARVAs are now a dime and a dozen. Frankly speaking, it is not really worth to restore Natasha when you can buy one that is already restored for less money. But…after all, there is only one Natasha. And Davyd now has shitloads of money, so who cares if he burns some. And…

Since the P20-series ARVA is by no means a rare vintage car in Archana, he starts to get a weird idea. What if he reached out to the different restomod companies to get a proposal on how they could make a P21 that not even his old self from the early 90s would have been ashamed to be seen in? After all, restored stockers are everywhere, but a seriously modded one would stand out from the crowd. And yet, be more useable, due to not using the most bare bones of stone age technology.


:star: :star: :star: :star: :star:

To be honest, what is the number 1 reason for putting money into modding a hopeless car instead of just buying a modern one? Also, as he said, he wanted a car that could prove to everyone that an old ARVA P21 can be cool. Including his 20 year old self.

So, what does that mean? Well, it would not be much of a challenge giving away TOO many details, so let’s say he’s not completely sure. But he has always liked modern custom cars that while looking contemporary incorporates the lines and general styling from cars of the past, and nods at the Amer…eh, Gasmean, hot rod culture. Think Chip Foose, or similar, for an IRL equivalent. He has also thought that concept cars like the Chrysler Atlantic and Holden Efijy has been cool, but he wants something personal and not a clone of some existing concept. Borrowing some styling cues can be OK, though.

:star: :star: :star: :star:

Why am I bunching four different stats together like this? Well, it's just that he wants it to feel modern and upmarket through and through. Not like the relic it is.

:star: :star: :star:

It will probably not be the car he is depending on the most, and he has money to repair it, but breakdowns when you really want to take a spin is boring stuff.
Can he afford to fill it up? Yes. But why waste more fuel than necessary? If it can run cheaper than the original, which wasn't all that sparse with fuel, he will be more than happy.
Same thing there, it's not that he can't afford service on it, but it's still more or less a silly toy if one should be realistic, so eating a too huge part of the budget just for maintenance would just be stupidity.
The main focus with this car isn't to be able to brag, but still, he wants to be able to show that an old P21 can be something wild and unexpected.

:star: :star:

Archanan roads, say no more. Yes, there is a possibility to choose the better ones, but generally they aren't always in the most perfect condition. It doesn't need to be a SUV, but it could still be kept in mind before building an asphalt carver.
As opposed to fuel and service costs, this is something he only has to pay out for once, and he didn't set the budget to shoot through the roof. But more car for less money is always tempting no matter what.
"In Archana we die like real men". Nah. Don't base your car on a meme.
There is much nostalgia in this car for him, but he realizes that it is nothing but a shell that needs some huge upgrades.


An 1 star priority as usual. The car has a detailed interior, due to already existing in my lore. Leaving it untouched won't give you any score here, but I leave it as an option since I know not everyone likes making interiors. Making it look worse than stock will, unlike exterior styling, not put you back here. So, do what you like, leave it untouched, modify it or rip it out completely and replace it with something new. An interior won't make or break a car but a nice one will give a slight bonus.


Friends and family do exist, now, it won't be that much of a dealbreaker with mods that decreases practicality, if they are justified somehow. The car wasn't really big enough to comfortably seat six as it does (rather it was how things use to be in 1949 and "better than walking" was the approach to comfort there), so it's probably not needed to keep them all. But single row seating while keeping it a 4 door sedan, and with a luxury interior, will be seen as rather cheesy and bad TBH.

In case all cars are close to the original and to each other, this will probably not be weighted in, but in case some cars stands out (positively or negatively), it will.


It has survived for three quarters of a century and will probably have an easier life now, the "don't make it worse" golden rule probably is the most important approach here. Now, "cardboard" isn't a panel material choice, but if it was, it would not be preferred in the Archanan climate.

In case all cars are close to the original and to each other, this will probably not be weighted in, but in case some cars stands out (positively or negatively), it will.


  • Clone both the imported model and engine family before you start modding. Nowadays this can all be done with one button of the Car Designer tab in Automation - the one circled red in the photo below.
  • Set all dates (model year, trim year, engine family/variant year) to 2020. It is highly recommended to exit the game and reopen it after cloning it and before updating the dates.
  • Maximum price (as shown in the Testing tab, Detail Stats section): $30,000
  • No V16s or race parts (race intake, race tubular exhaust, racing tyres). No semi-slicks.
  • Default +5 TP everywhere, as the car was originally made with.
  • A reasonable use of quality. I don’t want to see, for example, +15 on turbos and then -15 on safety. I am not sure that I want to set any hard limits here, but overly cheesy use of it WILL have its consequences in judging.
  • You’re of course allowed to ask an unlimited number of questions regarding the challenge in itself and its rules etc. - but also, you’re allowed to ask (privately, via DM) Davyd three personal questions about preferences that might affect how you want to build your car.


  • The general rule of ARM is to not make a car worse. Now, a very marginal drop in one single stat if it really bumps up the others will not instabin the car, so this is a very soft rule indeed, but still, try to avoid it at all costs.
  • Unleaded premium fuel
  • The car should appear street legal and useable without too much struggle. Just use common sense there. I won’t bin anyone for “this turn signal sits 2 cm too low” but the most important parts has to be there still. Speaking of turn signals, the old semaphore indicators are a bit unsafe in modern traffic and a replacement with modern units wouldn’t hurt.
  • The car should be able to pass WES7.
  • Regarding ATS, chassis tunnel size, firewall position and everything regarding engine position can be touched freely. Tyre thread width, tyre wall curve and tyre thread curve allowed in moderation (OK for adjustments, not to make the tyres look like something they are not, if you’re unsure, ask, this has worked in earlier challenges so it should probably do it now too). A (+/-3) ride height adjustment is allowed. Visibility settings can be freely touched. Wheelbase can be changed at a cost (see below)


  • Chassis type can be changed for a cost penalty of $10 000 (putting BOF vehicles on modern unibody platforms is becoming a thing nowadays, after all).
  • Chassis material can be changed for a $2000 cost penalty.
  • Panel material can be changed for a $2000 cost penalty.
  • Changing engine orientation will give a $5000 cost penalty.
  • Changing suspension type will give a $1000 penalty per axle.
  • A complete engine swap will give a $2000 penalty.
  • Only a cylinder head change will give a $1000 penalty
  • A swap of body type will give a $5000 penalty
  • Using morphs/3d that radically alters the look of the car will give a $3000 penalty. But if it can be done with a body swap, it is not allowed. For example, negataping the roof instead of using a convertible body.
  • Changing from RWD to FWD/AWD/4x4 will give a $4000 penalty.
  • Changing wheelbase (via ATS, swapping to a different wheelbase version of the same body is NOT allowed) will give a $500 penalty. Don’t make it silly just because you can.


5th of january, 6 PM CET. Yes, it is a while until they start, but I wanted to put up this thread now for different reasons, and I don't want to pull off this challenge until 24h submissions have closed. Until then, rules may be changed since they are only preliminary this far.
26th of january, 6 PM CET.


ARM29_-YOURNAMEHERE-PLEASECLONE-_ARVA_P21_Nachalnyk.car|attachment (80.2 KB)


ARVA P21 Nachalnyk


15k for a chassis change, while arguably reasonable compared to real-world costs of doing so, seems quite steep with a 30k budget.

On the other hand, a BOF vehicle is relatively straightforward to stretch into a longer wheelbase. Could that be allowed, perhaps for 5k if kept as BOF?

Yes, but keep in mind that you will get a rebate on many other changes instead, that probably would follow if you placed it on an unibody chassis from a modern car, or for that matter built a space frame or similar.

EDIT: Now when thinking about it, not all of the changes would probably be all that tempting to do. I might lower the cost of chassis swap and remove some of the rebates.

Yes, I have had thoughts about maybe allowing a WB change via ATS since it is BOF, and a new chassis could mean a different wheelbase too. I might allow it.

Hm, old-school fenders mean a wheelbase stretch can look just fine without changing the model (which usually also increases width). If the pillar morphs aren’t maxed out yet, all the better. For example, a WIP:

It’ll be fun to revisit this body. My first Automation car ever, about a year ago:

Yeah, if I allow a wheelbase change it will be via ATS, not changing to another wheelbase variant of the same body.

Started something aswell, yes this bodyset is always fun to play around with,.


Compatibility with later emissions standards than this is allowed, but not required, given that Archanan emissions laws are less stringent than those of any other region.

Well, Archana adopts WES7 in 2000, so it felt like a decent compromise. You don’t have to use the latest technology engine wise if you don’t want to, and you could probably adapt rather old school engines to it, too.


This is a lovely car to work with Knugcab, very nice design! I look forward to do my restomod of Natasha.

When scrolling through the fixtures I found two text ones that are missing their text. I assume they should say ARVA, but wanted to make sure. It’s these two:

On the hood under the star badge.

On the rear under the centre light.

Yes, for some reason it seems to have disappeared, I don’t know why but might have to do with this originally being a 4.2 car, it should say “ARVA” though. Also, I am not sure that I mirrored the pillar for the rear quarter window in the door, but it should of course be there on both sides, at least on a stocker.


can i make it fuel injected

For the sake of offering significantly improved performance, fuel injection of some sort (especially multipoint or even direct injection) is not only allowed, but encouraged, although the engine only needs to be compatible with WES 7, given Archana’s relatively lax emissions laws.

Does a body swap include a panel change cost in that as well?


One thing I will say already now is that I will do a little rebalancing overall when it comes to costs and rebates, so don’t go too much by what is written now (Moroza made me realize some flaws in the current ruleset).

But preliminarily, the answer is “no”. The freedom of body swap is mostly because a body can be more easily “reshaped” on a BOF vehicle where you don’t have to take as much care to the underlying structure, but it would still most probably be done in steel…

And yes , @ThatEpicBob , you can make it fuel injected, more or less anything that is not written in the rules as being banned, is allowed.



Due to unforeseen happenings in my life, rules delib will be extended two days (at least) until sunday the 7th, 6 PM CET. Sorry, but I didn’t see all of this coming. :frowning:



OK, did some updates:

  • Added weather resistance and practicality as 1 star priorities, since I was asked how important they were, and my conclusion was that they weren’t totally unimportant.
  • Allowed a wheelbase change via ATS (at a cost)
  • Lowered the price of a chassis change but removed the discounts. Sure, they would make sense IRL but I realize that you can’t perfectly translate things into IRL in this game, and that they would mostly benefit someone wanting to simulate putting the body on something similar to a Mitsubishi 3000 GT platform with transverse AWD. Not that it would be completely uninteresting but it is also just benefitting a very special, narrow niche.

So, no more suggestions as far as I know, so it is open since some hours…