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Jerod Shelby Details How Customers Can Spec Their Hypercar

SSC Tuatara
Image via SSC

Not limited to the typical constraints that are characteristic of an assembly like, the SSC Tuatara is assembled by hand in a facility in Richland, Washington. Because of this, there’s a myriad ways to configure this All-American hypercar. Yet, nobody outside of the company has really seen the kind of options that are offered on the SSC Tuatara, except customers. But today, we’re going to share with you a bit on how configurable the Tuatara actually is.

“We actually have a 14-page option list that goes out to our prospective customers,” said SSC founder and CEO Jerod Shelby in an interview with MC&T. Customers can also choose between two different body styles: the top speed version, which is pictured, and a high-downforce model, which hasn’t been revealed to the public just yet.

SSC Tuatara Hypercar

“It’s custom livery paint schemes, it’s all exposed carbon bodies, versus stripes, different wings and diffusers in exposed carbon,” he noted.

Jerod Shelby also disclosed that the interior is just as customizable as the exterior, meaning that it’s unlikely that any of the 100 SSC Tuatara hypercars destined to be built will be exact matches. Each vehicle should be a one-of-one, per the tastes of the customer dropping a minimum of $1,625,000 for the ability to own one. That jumps to $1,901,000 if the high-downforce variant is requested.

“On the interior, a customer has the ability to have any color combination on the interior, fully exposed carbon, different materials and stitching,” said Shelby.

As far as the mechanicals, however, the SSC Tuatara won’t see any options beyond engine output. The hypercar will be exclusively powered by a 5.9L twin-turbo V8 with a flat-plane crank V8 engine, supplied by Nelson Racing Engines, that spins to 8,800 RPM. Power will be sent to the rear wheels by way of a seven-speed automatic transmission that shifts in under 100 milliseconds.

“As far as the performance side, it’s set,” said Jerod Shelby. “If a customer decides they want the full horsepower all the time, they’re going to have to run E85 all the time. If a customer wants 1,350 horsepower, they’re running pump fuel.”

The first SSC Tuatara customer is Dr. Larry Caplin, who is a longtime customer of SSC, having acquired two Ultimate Aero hypercars, including the last one SSC built. His Tuatara is being used to breach the 300 mph barrier, and beyond.

SSC Tuatara Engine
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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