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WILL THE SSC TUATARA GO RACING? JEROD SHELBY IS ‘INTERESTED’

But It’s Not That Simple

SSC Tuatara Supercar Hypercar Top Speed Record Florida
Image via SSC.

Over the past month or so, MC&T has been piecing up and serving heaping portions of quotes from SSC North America founder Jerod Shelby regarding the Tuatara hypercar. As the SSC Tuatara claws its way back to redemption with a recent – official – production car speed record with a two-way speed average of 282.9 mph, the journey will soon take the American-made machine to greater extremes. There will be a re-run its top speed that mathematically approaches 350 mph, followed by a campaign at the mighty Nurburgring. The latter of which will presumably be with a track-only variant of the high-downforce model.

One would assume the next logical step would be taking the SSC Tuatara racing in some capacity.

“I am very interested in (racing the Tuatara),” said SSC North America founder and CEO Jerod Shelby to MC&T. However, with motorsports comes a completely different diagram of challenges. And, admittedly, it all starts with money.

SSC Tutara Rear Assembly Nelson Racing Engines Engine
Image via SSC

“Being a smaller company, it’s really hard to justify the cost of racing. So if the right relationship or opportunity came along where there was a race team that wanted to work together on the development, and they were funding a large portion of that, we’d certainly do (motorsports),” said Shelby. “And we do feel that we have a vehicle – even though we’re busy showing the capabilities of top speed right now – we actually think this car is more suited for road race settings. The braking, the cornering, the acceleration, all the above, make this a very very good track car. That’s going to be our next focus.”

The Washington-based automaker, which once held the production car speed record by besting the Bugatti Veyron with the SSC Ultimate Aero, will build only 100 examples of the SSC Tuatara. Afterwards, a “more affordable” supercar will follow, which should cost somewhere between $400,000-$500,000 to the Tuatara’s $1.6 million starting price.

SSC Tuatara Land Speed Record Production Hypercar Car
Image Via SSC North America.

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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