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SSC Tuatara top speed record will be rerun following controversy

Time 6 months ago

Shelby Supercars North America has confirmed it will complete another attempt for the title of the world’s fastest production car after social media users questioned its legitimacy.

SSC had claimed it had hit a two-way average of 316.11mph according to GPS data, but discrepancies were noticed between the video footage and claimed speeds.

The record attempt happened on a stretch of road in the Nevada desert used for previous record attempts, meaning people could compare footage of the Tuatara with earlier records.

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Tim Burton, better known as Shmee150 on YouTube, gave the conspiracy theories prominence when he made a video about it, saying the time taken to travel between certain landmarks indicated a slower speed than claimed.

Jerod Shelby, who runs SSC, has released a video statement explaining his side of the story, as well as praising those who analysed the footage.

He said: ‘As soon as we saw that [online speculation] – we’re a small organisation, we don’t have a massive crisis team, so we didn’t go back to the press immediately.

‘What we did, as a small team, was we requested all of the video files, because we hadn’t possessed them.

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‘The first couple from the same run, we all of a sudden were seeing the same doubts… between the video and the GPS. I took that very seriously.’

Shelby said he couldn’t provide conclusive proof that the run was legitimate, meaning his ‘perfect view I had of this record is now gone’, adding that ‘we have to rerun the record…and do it in a way that it’s undeniable and irrefutable’.

Following the news that Dewetron, the company that made the GPS device used by SSC, hadn’t sent one of its staff members to set up the measuring equipment, theories that the device was incorrectly configured by SSC staff has gained weight.

Shelby says multiple GPS devices will be used for the second attempt, with staff from each company on site to verify it.

SSC has not confirmed a date for the new record attempt, simply saying it will be soon.

SSC admits Tuatara video error in 316.11mph top-speed run controversy

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Darren Cassey's avatar

Darren is a staff writer for Car Dealer parent company Blackball Media. He has been writing about cars for eight years and tests all the latest models on sale, with previous experience at Car Throttle and DriveTribe.

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