SSC Tuatara, a lightweight, mid-engined, twin-turbocharged, petrol-powered American-made hypercar has just taken the mantel as the fastest production car in the world with a new top speed record of 331 mph (533 km/h).
Prior to the Tuatara, the speed record was held by the Bugatti Chiron Super Sport, but the Tuatara broke that record by a massive 38 mph, which is the biggest margin in the history of production car speed records.
SSC is a North American sports car manufacturer that was conceived in 1998. In 2004, the company introduced its first-ever supercar, i.e. the Ultimate Aero, which was also a mid-engined supercar that had a 6.3 liter supercharged V8 engine borrowed from a Corvette C5-R race car. The engine, however, was upgraded to make 1,287 horsepower and 1100 newton/meters of torque.
In 2007, the upgraded Ultimate Aero TT was introduced, which knocked the Bugatti Veyron off the perch and set a new speed record of 412 km/h (256 mph). SSC held that record for about 3 years until the Bugatti Veyron Super Sport took back the throne by setting a new speed record of 430 km/h (267 mph)
The difference between now and then is that last time, Bugatti was the one to deliver the last punch by throwing a Veyron Super Sport to challenge the Ultimate Aero TT. But now, it is SSC who took the last shot at the Bugatti Chiron Super Sport with their “base” Tuatara hypercar.
And that redeeming blow was made possible by a 5.9 liter twin-turbocharged V8 engine that makes an astonishing 1,350 horsepower (1,750 hp on E85 flex fuel), 1,735 newton/meters of torque, and is mated to a 7-speed CIMA automated manual transmission.
As per SSC North America itself, the speeds were also made possible, thanks to the razor-sharp aerodynamics of the car that allowed for an ideal drag coefficient and precise downforce on all 4 wheels. The automaker also has the intention of “making the car better in every way” in order for it to remain the gold standard of hyper-performance cars for a long time.