There aren’t many street-legal automobiles we haven’t driven, over the years, and among them there aren’t many we were intimidated by. That was before we got behind the wheel of the Shelby SuperCar Ultimate Aero.
First, a word of clarification. For those who immediately connect SSC with Texas legend Carroll Shelby, think again. It’s actually the work of Jerod Shelby, who made his fortune at a young age designing advanced medical technology – and who is now risking it all on a company that is obsessed with holding the world speed record for a production automobile. No family connection, but we think the better-known Shelby would appreciate his namesake’s efforts.
And what Jerod Shelby and his small but merry band of designers and engineers have come up with is a knife-edged supercar of daunting proportions.
Impossibly slow and aerodynamically sleek, its 6.8-liter twin-turbo V8 pours out 1280 horsepower and 1112 pound-feet of torque. During a series of timed runs, three years ago, that was enough to propel the Ultimate Aero to an average 258 mph – on open roads – giving it the crown as the world’s fastest production car.