SSC unleashes 1305kW Tuatara hypercar

By Motoring Staff Time of article published Feb 10, 2020

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Philadelphia - American hypercar specialist SSC has revealed the first customer version of its all-new Tuatara hypercar, and it's likely to become the world’s fastest production car. It’s also destined to be one of the world's most exclusive cars, with just 100 scheduled to be produced at SSC’s facility in Richland, Washington.

Although no official performance figures have been released as yet, the company has stated that it's targeting a top speed of 482km/h and it certainly has the power, with SSC quoting outputs of 1007kW when running on regular petrol and 1305kW when the tank is filled with an E85 ethanol blend.

Unlike most small-volume supercar makers, SSC isn’t just dropping an outsourced motor into the engine bay - instead it collaborated with Nelson Racing Engines to produce a bespoke twin-turbo V8 petrol engine. The 5.9-litre unit boasts a unique flat-plane crank configuration and it’s mated to a seven-speed automated transmission that boasts sub-100-millisecond gear changes when the car is in Track Mode. 

SSC says its Tuatara “alters reality on several automotive design and engineering fronts”, and its design and construction credentials are certainly impressive.

The car’s body and monocoque structure are fabricated entirely from carbon fibre, while the aerodynamic systems were devised in conjunction with Ferrari designer Jason Castriota.

"The aerodynamics package sets the Tuatara apart from our competitors,” says Castriota. 

“Not only does the car boast a class leading 0.279 drag coefficient, but also maintains an identical aero balance from 160km/h to well over 480km/h, resulting in an incredibly stable and predictable car that instills absolute confidence in the driver."

The Tautara also boasts a number of advanced automated systems that allow the driver to adjust the suspension, ride height, road holding, acceleration and gear shifts. 

“The SSC Tuatara personifies over a decade of a methodical, passionate, and innovative undertaking to create a car that exceeds measure on all fronts,” SSC said.

“It is a truly bespoke American hypercar that involves the collaboration and efforts of hundreds of dedicated individuals on a global scale.”

But will it ever wrestle the current production car speed record of 447km/h from the Koenigsegg Agera RS? The Tautara’s predecessor, the Ultimate Aero, held that crown from 2007 until 2010, and there’s no doubt that SSC plans to take it back.

IOL Motoring

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