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First Look: SSC Tuatara

Goliath, meet David.

by on Aug.24, 2011

Heading for a new land speed record? The SSC Tuatara will push for 275 mph.

Goliath, meet David.  Oh, and watch out for the rock.

It came as more than a little surprise, a few years back, when a little automotive start-up – from Washington State, no less – bested big Bugatti, the ultra-luxury Volkswagen Group brand to grab the world production car speed record, SSC’s Ultimate Aero topping out at a blistering 258 mph.

Bugatti ultimately got the trophy back, but the world was put on notice: don’t dismiss the folks from Shelby Super Cars.  No, not that Shelby.  This guy made a fortune developing medical devices before getting into automotive manufacturing, but spend a little time with Jerod Shelby and you realize he’s as passionate as anyone who grew up in the car business.

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And he’s got a new passion these days, SSC’s second car finally ready to reveal in time for the past weekend’s Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance.  TheDetroitBureau.com was there for the roll-out – and spent time over a long lunch discussing the oddly-named SSC Tuatara.

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This Supercar Is No Snake (But It Is a Reptile)

The other Shelby's new car called Tuatara, could take title of world's fastest production car.

by on Jul.20, 2011

Shelby SuperCars named its new car the Tuatara, in part because of the rear winglets.

Bugatti Veyron, meet the Shelby SuperCars Tuatara ( (pronounced twu‐tar‐ah).

SSC announced Monday that it will build the Tuatara, the successor to the Aero and Ultimate Aero supercars, which went back and forth with version of the Veyron for the title of world’s fastest production car.

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Named for a New Zealand reptile, the name translates to “peaks on the back” from the native Maori language. SSC says the name is fitting for the car, which has small winglets on the back. A bit of a stretch, but OK.

SSC founder, chief designer and CEO Jerod Shelby says there’s another link between the reptile and the car. The company says that the reptile has the fastest-evolving DNA in the world, a trait it shares with the new Shelby Supercar.

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