Richland’s $1.9 Million Tuatara Supercar Shatters Land Speed Mark
Brothers and sisters if you feel the need, the need for speed, do we have a ride for you.
SSC North America's, $1.9 million, 1750-HP, Tuatara hyper car will soon be verified as the "World's Fastest Production Car" by the Guinness Book of World Records, after posting a top speed of 331 mph, more than 40 mph faster than the previous record set in 2017 by Swedish car company Koenigsegg Automotive.
It's the continuation of Jerod Shelby's dream. Shelby, owner of SSC North America, grew up in Richland racing go karts as a youngster, and he always wanted to build his own race car.
I'd say he and his 24-employee team are living their wildest dreams...not Ocean Spray cran-raspberry drinking, skateboard riding, Fleetwood Mac "Dreams" listening, wild, but you get the idea.
The record was set on a closed Nevada State highway, Highway 160, October 10, 2020, outside of Las Vegas, near Pahrump, Nevada. The Tuatara's quickest run was 331.15 mph and her average speed was 316 mph.
Oliver Webb, the professional race car driver behind the wheel, said if the conditions were slightly better, he would have pushed it further, because he said she definitely had more in her.
Soon to be confirmed by the Guinness Book of World Records as the fastest production car in the world, the 1750-HP SSC Tuatara, is built by a 24-member team owned by Jerod Shelby, no relation to the legendary Carroll Shelby, that has operations based in Richland.
In order to officially verify the attempt, a jet, a helicopter and several drones were deployed to all video capture and document the culmination of an event that took a full nine months to plan.
SSC intends to build a production run of 100 Tuatara hypercars.
It was a triumphant moment for Shelby, who launched SSC North America in 1998, saying, "Nobody knew who we were, I decided that this top-speed record would be a good way to get mentioned in the same sentence with Bugatti, Koenigsegg, and Ferrari."
After studying mechanical engineering at the University of Washington, Shelby helped start a medical instrument company that produced imaging devices used for early detection of breast cancer. He used those earnings to finance his dreams of speed.
Shelby said, “This has been the majority of my adult life that has gone into this, this is a monumental time for us. ... This week has been an emotional time for our local team.”
Another Shelby beauty, SSC North America's Ultimate Aero, set the land speed mark to first put his company on the map in 2007.