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SSC TUATARA HYPERCAR ADDS METHANOL FUEL CAPABILITY

The 1,750 Horsepower Hypercar Adds A Third Fuel Variety To Its Disposal

SSC Tuatara Striker Aggressor Methanol Injection
Image via SSC North America.

The SSC Tuatara is already a hypercar that melts the spec sheet. With 1,750 horsepower and a 280+ mph speed run officially registered to its name, followed by the announcements of the high-downforce Striker and Aggressor packages, and near-infinite customization options, one would assume that there’s little room for the American-made machine to improve. But founder Jerod Shelby and the rest of SSC North America have figured out at least one way: the integration of methanol fuel capability on all Tuatara models.

The fueling system of the SSC Tuatara is flexible enough to allow customers to run a mix of gasoline-ethanol, gasoline-methanol, or straight 91+ octane, straight ethanol, or straight methanol. Between the three, customers can fill up based on their needs for fuel economy (gasoline), or performance (methanol/ethanol).

Say you’re an SSC Tuatara customer and you’re struggling to find available places to fill up on methanol. That’s fine, as SSC North America plans to offer exclusive packages to Tuatara owners that provide shipment of fuel and other essential elements directly to their garage, or racetrack, through partnerships between SSC and performance fuel brands.

Such are the perks of owning a $1.6+ million dollar hypercar.

“As the world continues to search for new, clean and renewable energy sources for combustion engines, methanol has raced back onto the scene. The opportunity to integrate expanded capabilities into our existing platform became obvious when we also realized the sweeping benefits of using a synthesized methanol-based fuel in our Tuatara, Striker and Aggressor powerplants”, said CEO Jerod Shelby. “As methanol is among the most promising alternatives for significantly shrinking our cars’ carbon footprint, we decided to offer it to our customers and incorporate it into our flex-fuel arsenal.”

SSC North America Tuatara Hypercar
Image via SSC North America

The Benefits Of Running The SSC Tuatara On Methanol

Methanol is a naturally cleaner, cooler burning fuel. As a result, methanol produces radically lower sulphur oxides, nitrogen oxides, and particulate matter relative to either gasoline or diesel fuel. Furthermore, the integration of the fuel requires almost no alterations to the 5.9L twin-turbo V8 supplied by Nelson Racing Engines for SSC. For the engine, running on methanol should lead to lower operating temps – great for turbos – and smoother operation. And as far as safety goes, ethanol fires are also easier to extinguish, and more difficult to ignite relative to gasoline.

“The peace of mind that it provides by lowering operating and exhaust temperatures gives an even greater sense of confidence as the Tuatara continues to push the envelope on the street and the track,” said Shelby.

Accepted as a cleaner alternative to conventional fuels, methanol can be produced using a variety of renewable and sustainable techniques utilizing municipal waste (garbage), biomass (plants) and recycled carbon dioxide (greenhouse gas).

Beyond the SSC Tuatara hypercar, the Washington-based automaker is also exploring methanol capabilities for future use in its next-generation of performance vehicles.

The SSC Tuatara Striker and Aggressor models join the hypercar lineup as track-focused versions.
Image Via SSC.

Written by Manoli Katakis

Muscle Cars & Trucks was founded by Manoli Katakis - an automotive media veteran that has been covering the latest car news since 2009. His journalism has uncovered dozens of major product changes, updates, plans, and cancellations long before automakers were ready to make things official.

Some highlights over the years of his reporting include the uncovering of the Zora trademark before anybody else reported on the coming of a mid-engine Corvette, as well as the dead-accurate reporting of the coming of the Chevrolet Colorado ZR2, two years before it hit the market, and even before the debut of the concept vehicle. This type of reporting has immediately continued here, with reports of the original seventh-generation Camaro plans being shelved, as well as what's in store for the Chevrolet Silverado.

Some of his work can be found on massive automotive media outlets, such as Motor1. He also has been a guest on the 910AM Radio Station with Detroit News auto critic Henry Payne, as well as the enthusiast-oriented Camaro Show podcast.

Over the years, Manoli has interviewed various automotive industry titans, leaders, and people that make things happen otherwise. These include figureheads such as GM CEO Mary Barra, GM President Mark Reuss, automotive aftermarket icon Ken Lingenfelter, Dodge firebrand Tim Kuniskis, along with various chief engineers of vehicles such as the Ford F-150 & Mustang, Chevrolet Camaro & Corvette, and many more.

At MC&T, Manoli is taking his journalism expertise, deeply planted sources, driving abilities, and automotive industry knowledge to new levels, covering more vehicles and brands than ever before. This is the place where you will continue to read groundbreaking stories about American performance vehicles, pickup trucks, and sport utility vehicles. Here is where you’ll also read insights and quotes from various automotive subject matter experts on the latest relevant products, as well as some of the latest official news from their manufacturers.

Fun facts: he also once beat Corvette Racing driver Tommy Milner in an autocross with a Chevrolet Bolt EV. The biggest vehicle he’s ever driven is a John Deere mining truck. Besides a go-kart, the smallest vehicle he’s driven has been a Hyundai i10. He’s also spent time in the cockpit of various American performance vehicle icons, including the fifth-generation Chevrolet Camaro Z/28, Dodge Challenger Demon, and Ford Mustang GT350R. He has reviewed dozens of trucks, SUVs, and performance vehicles over the years.

One of his favorite new vehicles on the market today happens to be the Chevrolet Colorado ZR2 Bison. He is also a card carrying member of the Sports Car Club of America, and regularly participates in Detroit Region autocross events.

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