Watch: SSC's Tuatara sets production car speed record with 450km/h run
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Just when we thought that SSC had blown the Koenigsegg out of the water with a blistering top speed run over in the Nevada desert, the brand was called out over legitimacy concerns.
After it was acknowledged that SSC has inaccurately recorded the Tuatara's speed over the two runs, it was decided that the attempt had to be re-done, which marred the brand's integrity significantly.
Instead of running the same stretch of road in Nevada, SSC took the Tuatara to the Johnny Bohmer Proving Grounds at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida. And instead of using the same professional driver, the owner of the car jumped in the hot seat.
To remedy the most controversial aspect of the first run, the brand claimed it used equipment from Racelogic (specifically, a VBox), Life Racing, Garmin and the International Mile Racing Association.
As usual, the Tuatara had to set two top speed runs in either direction, and the average speed is counted as the final figure. Here, the driver managed to do 449km/h northbound, and 460km/h southbound.
SSC CEO Jerrod Shelby explained that a different driving technique was employed in the official press release.
“We took a different approach this time in accelerating the car to the higher speeds. Larry Caplin, who owns the car, used a ‘drag race’ style of acceleration during the record runs, pulling full throttle and boost for 40-50 seconds. Back in October we were leaning into the speed much slower and used only about 20-25 seconds of full throttle and boost during the run. The difference is impressive both performance and operation wise. Larry pulled off a run that was far more difficult, at least by a factor of four, than what we attempted in Nevada.”
Unfortunately for SSC, it didn't manage to break the 300mph (482km/h) barrier like it set out to do with the Tuatara, but it sounds like the company plans to return to the Space Centre and take that record as well.
“I got a taste of full power in the top of seventh [gear] on the last run," Caplin explained in a company press release. "I am excited to come back and break 300 mph.”