Interstate '76 Tips & Tricks

Local Ditch > Interstate '76 > Strategy > Tips & Tricks

Car Design

Car design is just as important as being a skilled marksman. Being an excellent fighter can only help so much in a poorly designed car. So, avoid using any of the default setups.

Priority number 1: Reallocate the armor.

The default armor levels are averaged throughout the chassis and the external armor. More than likely (especially in the TRIP), you'll want to limit the amount you put in the chassis. Why? The chassis armor is affected when you crash into objects, drive on rough terrain, or are attacked with a fire weapon. The external armor, on the other hand, takes damage every time you get shot.

My recommendation: crank the chassis armor as low as it'll go on the left and right side, but a leave a little more in the front and rear. This will give some extra cushion in case you accidentally tag (or get tagged by) another car or bump into some scenery. With chassis levels this low, you may notice that driving over rough terrain will damage the chassis a tad, but it's almost never significant and only to the green (lightly damaged) level. Just don't run over any fire.

If you like to ram cars, be sure to leave some extra armor up front and install a Structo Bumper, which will double the chassis reinforcement in the front and rear.

After that, it's time to adjust external armor levels. Most of the time, you'll be taking shots from the front or the rear of the car - the sides don't get hit as much, so take the extra chassis armor and reinforce the front and back of the car. It's usually safe to leave side armor a bit less than the front and the back. If you want to play the numbers game, check out the weapons charts. If a Dr. Radar does 38 points of damage, then putting 39 on the side will allow you take a full hit from the missile and still have a bit of armor hanging around.


EngineHorse PowerWeight
(0-60 mph)
Quarter Mile
261ci 6 cylinder2253989.5 sec17.5 sec/87 mph
305ci V83004597.0 sec14.7 sec/96 mph
432ci SHO V84255505.5 sec13.5 sec/111 mph
595ci V-105766784.7 sec11.4 sec/135 mph

Sometimes, biggest isn't always best. A small car with a small engine will still be as fast as a large car with a large engine. Generally, in I '76 the bigger you go with the engine, the faster it'll make the car, so if you want a fast Leprechaun, you can still throw a V-10 in it, but there are some disadvantages. One is that as the engines get increasingly faster, they are more prone to damage. That super-fast V-10 can't take as many shots as the dinky V-6.

The other important factor here is weight. A small car is quick and nimble because of its low weight, and this is an advantage that you'll likely want to keep. Since smaller cars have less overall armor, they need to be able to move around and avoid damage, as they simply can't take the punishment that larger cars can.


SuspensionLateral AccelerationWeight
Off-Road Damage
Stock.70 g700%
Sway Bars.82 g75-10%
Coil Overs.93 g82-20%
EtherX Rally.99 g91-45%

Of course, as we move up the suspension ladders, they grip the ground more and will handle better during cornering and turning. The Stock suspension will start losing grip and slide on almost anything but the most shallow turns, while at the other extreme, the EtherX will almost never slip.

But, as with the engines, there is a price to pay: the better the handling, the more susceptible the suspension will be to damage. Trust me, it's no fun to drive around with a damaged suspension, losing the ability to turn and maintain speed driving driving any other diretion than straight. The 10% damage trade-off for Sway bars is worth it. Even the 20% for Coil Overs is acceptable, but a 40% damage penalty for the EtherX is just too much. My recommendation: Go for the Coil Overs, but stay away from the EtherX. It takes too much damage, and besides, sometimes it's good to have a little slide in the car.


(70-0 mph)
4-wheel Drum250 feet25
Disc & Drum220 feet29
4-wheel Dis170 feet34
Aircraft Brakes120 feet39

Brakes pretty much follow the same lines as the suspension. The better ones will stop you faster, but at damage and weight penalty. Though it sucks to not be able to stop when you need to in the even that your brakes are severely damaged, there's still the hand brake to work with, so stick with either the 4-wheel Drum or the Disc & Drum. If you really do need extra braking power, grab an X-Aust Brake special, which will cut the braking distance in half without sacrificing any damage resistance.


13in Stock84
14in Rally89
15in Krager93
16in Billits103

The larger you go, the better the car will handle and grip. As seen in the Enthusiast's Q&A, though a larger wheel is unsprung weight and should affect handling, it doesn't seem to in I '76. Like the other options, larger wheels are more prone to damage, but there is more good news. Even though they can take fewer hits, they will help protect the car from droppers. The higher from the ground your car, the less likely that fire droppers will do damage to it.

Personally, I usually throw the 15s on and call it a day, but it going up to the 16s doesn't seem to be a bad option in this case.


Ever wonder what those specials do? Here's a list:

  • Cup Holders reduce the probability of being hit by 10%.
  • Structo Bumpers double your front and rear chassis reinforcement.
  • Heated Seats give you 10% more ammunition.
  • Curb Feelers reduce the likelihood of flipping your car.
  • Mud Flaps reduce the amount of chassis damage you receive from vegetation.


Turn you engine off to avoid turrets from tracking you and Dr. Radar missile attacks. When you hear the warning beep, turn off your engine.

Ever notice how sometimes it takes only one shot to get an enemy car's damage indicator down to red, then takes forever to kill them? That's because the damage indicator shows the weakest part of a car. That means if you blast one side to red, then the damage indicator will show the whole car as red.

Of course, this can be used to your advantage. To kill a car with the handgun, they must be red. It takes exactly five shots to kill them.

Does your opponent have their engine off? Can't tell if they're "in the red?" Look at the smoke coming out of their vehicle. If it's white smoke, they're in the yellow damage range. Dark gray smoke? They're in the red damage range are ripe for the picking.

A weakness of many cars is their chassis armor level. Flame and fire weapons (as well as WP mortars) will attack the chassis, so often times, only a few hits with these weapons will bring a car's damage to the red level.

Blox-droppers and landmines don't disappear after you drop them and cause lag. Don't use them online.

Aim-Nein missiles will only gather a lock on your target if it is moving directly towards you, directly away from you, or not moving. If there is any lateral movement, then the lock will be lost.

Hit L to link like weapons together. This allows you to fire similar weapons at the same time, and allowing you to deal greater damage to your enemy.

You can also fire weapons at the same time by using the number keys. This allows you to keep digging away at the enemy's armor with your machine guns and score a big hit with some missiles without letting off the machine gun fire.

Keep aiming at the same spot on the car. A few well-placed shots to the same section of an opponent's vehicle is more worthwhile than random hits all over. In particular, many people don't put too much armor on the sides of their car, meaning if you can get a few good shots to the side, you'll do some serious damage.

If you have more than nine variants per car, your variants will act up.

For more information, please check out the Weapons Analysis or feel free to Contact Me.

Created: 1/4/08
Updated: 3/23/2013 - Smoke Color