SSC Tuatara

Feel the need for speed? New hypercar to break speed record

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If your idea of a fast car is one with a power output of up to 1350bhp that’s capable of hitting at least 278mph with ease then say hello to SSC’s long-awaited Tuatara. Thanks to a 7 litre turbo engine, it’s ready for the land speed record.

SSC has been showing off the sleek curves of its so-called hypercar in a series of mean and moody shots that really do whet the appetite. Looking like a supersleek Batmobile, the Tuatara is aiming to take the record for highest speed in a production car away from the Swedish Agera RS.

Warp speeds

Koenigsegg, makers of the Agera RS, is no stranger to speed records. Not only does it hold the production car speed record at 277.9mph, but it is also the proud owner of the 0-400kph-0 record that had been set just a few weeks before by the Bugatti Chiron.

Where the Chiron took 41.96sec, the Agera RS was over 5 seconds faster. Bugatti has yet to really test the Chiron, however, and Koenigsegg has yet to unleash its next hypercar the Regera.

Fierce competition

Competition for the bragging rights to be the fastest production car in the world has always been fierce. Another marque throwing its hat in the ring is Hennessy, an American manufacturer taking a serious tilt at cracking the 300mph barrier.

The Venom F5 is built from light but strong carbon fibre and has a projected top speed of just over 300mph. It’s thrown down the gauntlet to the Tuatara which has, the company claims, an unmatched drag coefficient. That was the undoing of the Venom last time it had a crack at the record.

Tyre tracks

One component that could limit the success of any speed record is the tyres. Some detractors say that a true street legal record will never be achieved because consumer tyre technology simply isn’t up to the job.

John Hennessy says he has the full cooperation of Michelin, which has given its full technical support to create a normal tyre that’s up to the job. As Hennessy argues, it’s not as if the Venom is going cross country at 300mph plus.

The contenders

Of course, Koenigsegg will respond aggressively to any attempts to take its crown, while the Bugatti Chiron has a monstrous 1479bhp engine that could power it to a record.

McLaren and Zenvo are also said to be working on models that are capable of giving the Agera RS a run for its money, wherever there’s a long, flat, quiet stretch of road.

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