The $1.6 million SSC Tuatara just hit 475km/h in a top speed run

Published on May 26, 2022 at 1:34 PM (UTC+4)
by Patrick Jackson

Last updated on Jul 29, 2022 at 11:01 AM (UTC+4)
Edited by Kate Bain

The $1.6 million SSC Tuatara just hit 475km/h in a top speed run

US supercar builder SSC has wheeled its infamous Tuatara back out for another top speed run, with the car nearing the fabled 300mph (483km/h) mark.

In 2020, the company controversially claimed it had smashed through that barrier, with many internet sleuths questioning the claims based off footage.

Sure enough, SSC later walked back on those claims, but that hasn’t stopped them from having another crack.

READ MORE: 5 hypercars faster than an F1 car – including the bonkers SSC Tuatara

After only managing a two-way speed of 286.1mph (460.4km/h) in January 2021, the company has finally neared the mark with its latest go.

Larry Caplin, a hypercar collector and SSC Tuatara owner, piloted his own car down the runway at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida on May 14.

On the 2.3-mile (3.7km) stretch of runway, Caplin hit a top speed of 295mph (474.8km/h) on the dot.

To alleviate doubt of the claims, three different systems were used to verify the speed.

Internal and external antennas were used as well as GPS tracking.

While an incredible achievement, it’s still shy of the Bugatti Chiron Super Sport and its 304.8mph (490.5km/h) crown.

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However, Bugatti cannot officially claim the record yet as that is only a one-way speed, not a two-way average.

The team at SSC truly believes the Tuatara has a certified 300mph in it, and this run has us believing it’s possible as well.

With the car sounding like it had more left in the tank when Caplin had to let off the gas, it seems entirely possible 300mph is actually realistic for it.

“What was most impressive to me was how it kept going through fifth, sixth, and seventh gear,” Mitchell Townsend, a technician for Racelogic who verified the speed, said.

“No road car I’ve seen pulls like that; you’re getting definitely into racecar territory when you’re seeing cars accelerating that fast in higher gears.”

For anyone interested in buying their own SSC Tuatara, regardless of how fast it actually is, prices start at a cool $1.6 million.

SSC Tuatara specifications

  • Engine: 5.9-liter twin-turbo V8
  • Power: 1750hp (1300kW) on E85 fuel
  • Torque: 1322lb-ft (1800Nm) on E85 fuel
  • Transmission: 7-speed automated manual
  • 0-60mph (0-97km/h): 2.5 seconds
  • Top speed: 295mph (one-way confirmed)

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Patrick Jackson

A car zealot from a young age, Patrick has put his childhood spent obsessing over motoring magazines and TV shows to good use over the past six years as a journalist. Fuelled by premium octane coffee, he’s contributed to Finder, DriveTribe, WhichCar, Vehicle History and Drive Section.