Back in mid-October, we were among the news outlets reporting that the SSC Tuatara “hypercar” had exceeded 331 mph in a record-setting run on a closed straight stretch of Nevada highway.
Since then, several people have studied the video of the run and come to the conclusion that the vehicle didn’t actually achieve that speed, and faced with such evidence, SSC North America founder Jerod Shelby has issued a video statement saying that he, too, doubts the claimed achievement and is making plans for another run in hopes to verifying his car is the fastest production car in the world.
The problem appears to be discrepancies between what the GPS equipment used to time the recent run reported and what the video of the run actually shows.
Side-by-side comparison of the SSC Tuatara run and that by the Koenigsegg Agera on the same roadway shows the Swedish car to be clearly faster, reaching 277.87 mph.
Julian Thomas, founder of Racelogic, software which logs data from moving vehicles, calculated that the Tuatara’s top speed on its run was actually 223.75 mph.
But, he adds, based on the data, the car is capable of considerably higher speeds.
Jerod Shelby’s video response follows:
And then there is this from technology website newatlas.com:
“Who cares? There’s no denying the Tuatara is a fiendishly fast and powerful car, whose owners will likely never get the chance to push it to five times highway speed. Hypercar speed records are now so dangerous, and so far removed from regular Earthly use cases, that the whole thing can easily be viewed as a petrolheaded engineering circlejerk that’ll one day have lethal consequences for some gallant test driver caught by an unlucky gust of wind.
“But to buyers of these multimillion-dollar toys, prestige is everything. Reputation and excellence matter. Cars like this can sell for 10 times their original price with the right story attached to them; a famous owner, a movie appearance, a moment in the global headlines as the fastest car of its time.”