General

Away from SSC’s false speed claim, here’s the true top speed of the Tuatara

Tuatara

In this age of innovation and speed, few Americans doubted supercar Shelby SuperCars (SSC) company when it stated that the Tuatara reached the dizzying speed of 331 mph (533 km/h) and hit a two-way average of 316.11 mph. But before long, several industry experts contested the record.

For example, YouTuber Schmee150 challenged the idea by comparing Tuatara’s run to the Koenigsegg Agera RS’s run on the same seven-mile stretch on Nevada State Route 160.

“There are some areas that aren’t quite right; from the time traveling between the fixed medians on the road and the painted street markings, to the dashboard and telemetry data being out of sync, and also on the technical side with the engine and gearbox configuration,” said the YouTuber.

Schmee150 also stopped at the audio recording to determine RPM and the contradictions between the telemetry data and the visual cues from the shift and tachometer. It was foreseeable that Schmee150 was not alone in discovering and exposing several contradictions.

Related: No Records Broken Despite SSC Tuatara Reaching 295 MPH

Shelby SuperCars admits shortcomings

After the controversy peaked, SSC had to give it another try, but this time the super-fast car only reached 483 mph. In any case, this is an incredible speed for a production vehicle, but it didn’t come close to their claimed record speed of 331 mph.

The plot twist got even more intriguing in the summer of 2021 when SSC had to debunk their own claim via an Instagram post. According to SSC’s social media post, the hypercar failed to reach the dizzying speed of 331 mph. Worse, it didn’t even get to 301 mph.

“We’ve seen your questions for months now and understand your frustrations,” SSC said. “If it has not been made clear thus far, we would like to officially acknowledge that we have not reached the originally claimed speeds of 331 mph or even 301 mph by October 2020.”

Breaking a record, but not the right one

According to several sources, the supercar reached a top speed of 282.9 mph, which is much lower than the advertised speed, but still exceeds the Agera RS’s previous record of 277.9 mph.

On a positive note, the second road around the Tuatara broke a world record when it reached a top speed of 474.8 km/h and it became the fastest production vehicle in the world. Under normal circumstances, the supercar was expected to reach 300 mph, but the test took place on a shorter runway in Florida. Accordingly, the car could not reach its full potential due to the limited track.

Even this time, Dr. Larry Caplin the supercar to success. He overcame his previous record with the Tuatara at 282.9 mph – which was an average of two runs – 279.7 mph northbound and 286.1 mph southbound.

It is worth noting that this time around, SSC has called on several experts to witness the ride. For example, Jerod Shelby, Robert Mitchell and Mitchell Townsend agreed to attend the event. And the speed was recorded by Racelogic with dual VBOX GNSS systems on board the car, along with a Life Racing GPS unit for additional data acquisition.

It would be interesting to see how long the Tuatara can hold the record for the world’s fastest car, as its rivals are already developing and improving their own supercars.

Related: Here’s What Makes The SSC Tuatara’s Engine Such A Beast

The fastest cars in the world built for the richest people

Normal people might wonder who buys these insanely expensive and incredibly fast cars. Priced at over $2 million and made to travel the highway at incredible speed, this supercar is not made for city dwellers or commuters, but for very wealthy individuals who collect exotic cars and live in regions where speed limits are lax.

I am thinking of the prosperous elite of Dubai and Abu Dhabi. As early as 2011, Tuatara was a huge success at the Dubai Motor Show, where 10 units were sold for a total of $13 million, according to Autoblog. Since then, the exotic cars manufactured by Shelby SuperCars have continued to win new customers in the region. That said, Tuatara is the epitome of wealth, speed and luxury; therefore, it is not surprising that UAE customers can relate to this exotic car.

In a city where the police have a super-luxury fleet of exotic cars like: the 918 Porsche Spyder, Lamborghini Aventador LP700-4, Bentley Continental, Ferrari FF and Bugatti Veyron, and teenagers drive collectors’ cars, a fleet of Tuatara fits right in. European and North American fans will probably have to wait longer to see one of these exotic beats on the highway.