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SSC Tuatara revealed in Shanghai

Sat, 13 Aug 2011 00:00:00 -0700

Jerod Shelby reveals the SSC Tuatara in Shanghai

We finally discovered last month that Shelby Supercars wouldn’t be calling their new Veyron-bashing hypercar the Ultimate Aero II (which seemed logical) but has instead taken a leaf out of Pagani’s ‘Book of obscure names for Supercars’ and decided on SSC Tuatara.

Yep, SSC has named their hypercar after the Maori name for a lizard, a lizard with the fastest evolving DNA of any creature (doubtless the motivation for Jerod nicking the name for his car).

Interestingly, a comment on the story we ran about the new SSC getting the Tuatara moniker said that as well as having the fastest evolving DNA of any creature, the Tuatara “…puts a tortoise to shame in the slow moving stakes, and is also regarded as a living link to the dinosaurs” which, for Jerod Shelby’s benefit, we should probably gloss over.

Now, finally, it’s not just well-heeled petrolheads who get to have a look at the Tuatara in the flesh, as SSC has taken the Tuatara to Shanghai to launch SSC Asia. Which in itself tells you more about the changing landscape of the car market than any number of learned dissertations could.

With a 6.8 litre turbo delivering 1350bhp and a likely price tag the wrong side of $1 million, Shanghai is probably the very best place on the planet to publicly reveal the Tuatara. One in every 175 individuals in Shanghai is worth more than £1 million, and there are 8,000 (and rising) individuals in Shanghai worth more than £10 million – many of those with wealth in the hundreds (or thousands) of millions.

So Shelby put on a bit of a show for the press and guests, rolling out SSC founder Jerod Shelby, the man who designed the Tuatara - Jason Castriota – and SSC Asia President Don Xu and SSC Asia Co-Founder Jason He. All the big SSC guns in one place to show China that SSC has something very special to offer in the Tuatara. Which it very clearly does.

Now, please, time for some substance on the SSC Tuatara. Enough glitz.

(10 photos – click any thumbnail for full gallery)

(click any thumbnail for full size version)


By Cars UK