ARM25: Silver Jubilee Showoff!

General ARM rules
Previous ARM


Gather round, gather round, and hear the story of Gia Holbrook! Late 20s, too much money and not enough to use it on…

During the pandemic, Gia worked with some friends to create a piece of software. What it is is irrelevant here, but what happened to it is. See, a big-name VC firm or a big tech company or something came knocking. Gia was diametrically opposed to the idea on some variety of concerns… But her friends weren’t. It was big enough that a rift opened up between her and the friends she had worked with, until an offer came in. They were offering to buy her out of the software, out of all of it. She’d walk away completely, with enough money to never work another day. Was it really worth fighting for, with that offer on the table? Gia could see the writing on the wall, she knew she’d have a tough time staying around with the agreement… So she took the money, never having to work again.

But what do you do with that much money? That’s the question that faced Gia as she went back to her small one-bedroom flat… And saw her old beat-up 1979 AMM Sarek off-roader. Obviously some of the money would be sensible, but maybe a new car could be good. Of course, that’s what she thought before a celebration involving loud music and hot coffee. The more she partied, the more dumb ideas popped into her mind. A Mad Max poster on the wall, a copy of NFS Underground on the shelf… Why not get stupid with her money?


A couple of weeks passed. Meetings with lawyers, realtors, setting up the boring, practical things, like a massive chunk of money in incredibly dull government funds… And the more she saw her Sarek, the more she wanted to have fun with it. So, having fun is what she intends to do.

Rules, Cost Factors

Basic Rules

  • Maximum price: 65000 AMU
  • The base car is actually a 1979 model, but all years on this one should be set to 2020, to represent basic modernisation. I have already done this, because everyone having to spam the “advance 10 years” button doesn’t make the challenge more fun.
  • Techpool should remain at the default “5 everywhere” allocation, as it currently is.
  • The stock chassis type and material (corrosion-resistant ladder) must be maintained.
    – In addition, the stock panels (aluminium) must be retained as well. This is a deviation from normal ARM rules.
  • No V16s, for balance.
  • 100 RON unleaded fuel is legal. Lower RON may be used, but will have no benefit.

Advanced Trim Settings

  • Where an effect can be accomplished via engineering (i.e. without use of advanced trim settings), you may not use advanced trim settings to do this. That includes:
    – Wheel diameter, wheel width, camber
    – Tyre diameter, tread width
    – Ride Height except where both values add to zero (i.e. squatting a car with +5 front and -5 rear is fine, squatting with +10 front and 0 rear is not)
    – Chassis track width
  • For clarification, if you’ve maxed out the engineering and want to go even further (massive wheels, super ride height, etc), the previous rule does not apply as you can’t use engineering there. You should still push the engineering as far as you can first, and get as close as you can.
  • Wheelbase offset should remain reasonable.


The following morphs are classed as “difficult morphs” - see the section on cost penalties for what that means. Each morph is listed with its base value.

  • UpperWindow: 0.3
  • LowerWindow: 1
  • FrontLower: 0
  • RearLower: 1

Other requirements

  • The restomodded car merely needs to be statistically superior to the original in judged stats. If a stat isn’t being judged (practicality, utility, etc), it simply does not exist. The restomod should only make sensible compromises to the original. Making a non-judged stat like practicality worse is fine. Making 2-star stats worse than the original is probably fine too (especially given how the 2-star stats are particularly high on the base car). Making the car less drivable or safe than the original is almost certainly not fine.
  • Entries must be road-legal. Owing to the nature of the challenge, I am going to enumerate what that means:
    – The final product must have headlights, taillights, indicators, etc.
    – The final product must have mirrors, wipers, license plate, etc. Mirrors should provide reasonable visibility, license plate should be visible front and back
    – The final product must have a 3-way catalytic converter and may not have an engine loudness above 50.
    – Entries must have road-legal dimensions, specifically (based on Australian laws):
    — Total length no greater than 12.5m.
    — Width no greater than 2.5m.
    — Height no more than 3.8m (the height of a bridge that used to be near where I live).
    — Small components must not stick out unrealistically far from the car.

Cost Penalties

The following cost penalties may apply:

  • Changing suspension type: $1000 per axle
  • Total engine swap: $3000
  • Changes to engine head only: $1500
  • Gearbox swap: Free
  • Swapping to another body style in the same family: $1000
  • For each of the four “difficult morphs” you change, you will incur an additional $1000 cost.
  • Using 3D to do stuff that has a similar effect to those last two will have the same cost.

<End of rules>



  • Interesting concept: Sure, you can stick to just making a car… But a car with a novel idea behind it will do better.


  • Initial impression: When viewed from a distance, how good does it look?
  • Comfort: The existing Sarek makes a lot of compromises in terms of comfort. The interior is average, solid axles are not particularly comfortable… And that is complaint number one with it, really.
  • Drivability: Gia doesn’t want to hire someone to drive for her. She still wants to do stuff herself, so she cares about the driving dynamics.


  • Coherence: Does the carpet match the drapes? Does an ultra-refined, whisper-silent turbo i6 really belong in a Mad Max car?
  • Safety: You can’t take it with you, after all. The last thing Gia wants is a premature death.


  • Detailed aesthetics, execution: Try to avoid automation jank, but it happens. If I look closely and see a lot of stuff that feels sloppy, you’ll lose marks here.
  • Interior design: Interiors are optional, but will definitely help here. However, take care to minimise the amount of underlying structures I can spot. If I can see your chassis or exhaust piping, I won’t be happy.


  • Reliability: Gia would really like being able to actually use the new car fairly regularly, if possible.
  • Offroad: Truth be told, these modifications will probably make it not particularly great on the tracks… But being able to go places would be useful…


  • Fuel economy: She may not care much about running costs, but she does care about how often she has to stop for fuel.

Not Considered:

  • Prestige: This car is largely for Gia’s own enjoyment. Prestige is all about what other people think.
  • Service costs, value: Lol. Lmao.

<End of priorities>
A note before getting into inspirations, these are placed into two groups, representing different directions you can take… But if you’re doing something wild and weird, you’re probably on the right track. More groups may be added as needed.

Inspirations Group One: Apocalypso







Inspirations Group Two: Play Us A Tune

(Just about anything from NFSU2 might work here)


Inspirations Group Three: What Weren't They Smoking?

This group is just Burning Man Art Cars. Yup.


First off, make sure you clone the model and engine family. The game has a nice easy button to do this.
Second of all, I am going to allow for rules deliberation until 11:59 PM UTC on Friday the 4th of August. During this period, you may ask up to two questions about Gia publicly here in the thread, and you can submit up to two potrential inspirations which will be judged as hot or not. Some may be added to the post as well. I’ll try to have the answers and opinions up by Sunday.
After this period, you may ask up to two questions in private until 72 hours before the challenge closes. I will make sure to answer at least 48 hours before the challenge closes.
The challenge will close on at 11:59 PM UTC the 27th of August. I understand that this is a touch longer than most other ARMs, but I am asking for something a touch more involved here, I hope everyone understands.

Finally, the base car is here:


This is a second ARM in which the donor car is from the Automationverse, and considering the Sarek’s rugged appearance, it’s a fitting choice for the 25th round of ARM.

How does Gia intend to spend her time now that she no longer has to work?

Has Gia heard of Rhania before?

Please note that the rules have been tweaked and clarified - advanced trim options can be used if engineering is maxed out, and you don’t have to match the base car’s off-road and reliability.

The public questions will be answered once rules deliberation ends, so don’t hold back because the existing questions haven’t been answered.


What we did to the outside is really too much to mention - just let the pictures speak for themselves. But we did our best to mix post apocalyptic styling with steampunk influences, for example by crafting lots of detailwork from wood and brass.

A General Motors Vortec 4200 now takes place under the hood, sorry, where the hood once was. Turbocharged to 505 hp and mated to a modern 7 speed auto. Things like air suspension, semi active damping, ESC, detachable swaybars and variable EPS makes it a more pleasant experience both on and off the road than the original, so don’t let the rough outside fool you.

Also despite the rough outside, we have restored everything to way higher standards than the factory specs. A sturdy cage, FIA approved racing seats and harnesses are ensuring the safety for you and your passengers.

And while the interior looks primitive - we have managed to hide creature comforts like climate control, digital instrumentation and modern infotainment, making this a car that is fully useable on a daily basis.


LG Sarek “Lowroader”

Lowered and widened with a hint of 1970th “van culture” the custom interior is all blue and white leather with the latest electronics. The engine is replaced with a modern V8 making about 345hp. Can be built for 40000 A$.


You said on the discord that you weren’t as creative as me with your build. I disagree!

1 Like

In theory, rules deliberation is done and questions are closed… But I forgot to remind y’all, so I’ll extend it for another 24 hours.

Having said that, the two entries we have absolutely nail the brief, so y’all are definitely on the right track.

All right, I’ll bite.

  • Is it important for Gia to have more than two seats in the car?
  • What are Australian laws regarding prop guns and are they even desirable (despite showing up in several inspiration photos).

Edit: this is a rule clarification question re costs. So changing to a different body style is $1k, and each of the major morphs is an additional $1k each, for a potential total of $5k. And doing 3D stuff incurs the same cost. So my question is - hypothetically speaking of course - if you just make the whole body transparent and rebuilt the entire thing in 3D… that’s $5k, right? Asking for a friend… hypothetically.

  • When/how did Gia originally acquire the '79 Sarek?
  • What is it about the Sarek, in its current state, that she already likes and dislikes?

What would Gia do with her SUV once it’s given to her?(SEMA, Overlanding, drag racing, rallying, etc)

It largely depends on what you want your build to be. For example, if you want to turn the Sarek into a Dakar raider, by all means do so.

Has Gia ever loved princesses, pink and diamonds?

If she can’t do anything software/business related, what is she doing Friday and Saturday night?


Answers time:

@HelloHi: Gia really isn’t sure. Maybe she’ll contribute to open source software. Maybe she’ll volunteer somewhere. Maybe she’ll take up a hobby like photography or rock climbing.

@happyfireballman: She hasn’t heard of Rhania, no, but she’d gladly read a little about them if one of the entries is Rhania-related. [OOC: If you submit a Rhania or swap in a Rhania engine, some Rhania stuff will be considered. Won’t be tons, though.] What will she do with it? Whatever it’s most suited for, but she is unlikely to deliberately push performance particularly far unless that’s clearly the only thing the car is for.

@cake_ape: Having four or five seats would have its uses but Gia isn’t particularly attached to them. You should be careful, however, to make sure there’s not a massive void in the interior - if you’re removing the seats, have a coherent reason to. As far as Australian laws around replica guns go, the actual laws vary from state to state - they’re legal in some areas and require a license in others. For the sake of the challenge, though, replica guns are completely legal and will not be regulated in any way.

@Edsel: She bought the Sarek from her grandfather, who used it for work. She appreciates the reliability of the car, and the fact it can fit a lot of stuff, but that’s about it - there’s plenty she ultimately doesn’t appreciate about it. There is an emotional connection to the car though, which is why she is keeping it… But her grandfather was a tinkerer who modified his cars a lot, she knows he would want it modified.

@karhgath: She went through a massive pink phase as a kid, and even has a pink PC to this day. She definitely wouldn’t say no to a Barbie Princess Dream Car. As for what she’ll do with a Friday or Saturday night, see my answer to Hi. She might also go out to see live music, stay in and read a book, who knows?


Oh, and yes, changing the whole body and building literally everything in 3D does indeed cost 5k. Theoretically, throwing everything out and starting over should cost more but I’m not gonna make rules there. It’s already painful enough to do.


TreadKillers Present

Unshackled #01

Taking you to the extreme and beyond

The only thing you need it 5L of glorious V8 with a turbocharged 1000hp right behind your seat. No backseats, no accidents. Not one panel has been left, undrilled, unbend or unsawed,

Strap in, say your last prayer and floor it


Hi all, just a friendly reminder that the challenge closes on Sunday.

I’m sorry


Hey all, just a friendly reminder that you have three days left to submit! This also means that the questions period is closed.