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.
“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.