There are a lot of ways that you can define the SSC Ultimate Aero. But it can be summed up this way. There used to be a time that it is indeed the ultimate. Simply known as the world’s fastest car from 2007 to 2010 (and that is even verified by no less than Guinness!), it is perhaps one of the boldest automotive creations ever made.
Shelby SuperCars, a brand of car better known for its replicas of exotic cars, is founded by Jerod Shelby. While by no means connected to the legendary Carroll Shelby, Jerod have somehow managed to create a legend of his own, thanks to his creation, the SSC Ultimate Aero.
This car traces its roots in 2004, when a prototype based on a Lamborghini Diablo replica chassis was equipped with a Corvette C5R engine and the same 6 speed manual gearbox seen on the Dodge Viper. Eventually, the SSC Aero was born in 2006. Equipped with a Chevrolet small block engine, together with a supercharger that generates up to 8 psi of boost, it is known to produce 1062 horsepower.
Even better is the SSC Ultimate Aero. Essentially a modified version of the Aero, displacement of this same Chevrolet engine was increased to 6.3 liters and supercharger boost was increased to 14 psi. The results were simply unbelievable: almost 1200 horsepower and more than 1100 Newton meters of torque. Subsequent modifications such as twin-turbos and a new engine block, has allowed the output of the Ultimate Aero to increase even further. In 2009, the output was rated at 1287 horsepower, easily the world’s most powerful car engine.
Other modifications result into a 20% increase in engine airflow (resulting in better cooling) and a new AeroBrake system using vented slotted discs allow the spoiler assist in slowing the car to a stop. All of these components, thanks to some sophisticated engineering involving carbon fiber and titanium, among other materials, allow this car to hit the scales at around 1300 kilos, an astounding weight considering its immense power.
So how does the SSC Ultimate Aero perform? Well, the natural thing with cars with such gaudy stats is to go for some really huge feats. Feats such as creating the world speed record by a production automobile. Prior testing at a NASA facility at Virginia uncovers that the Ultimate Aero is capable of achieving speeds of more than 250 mph. But of course, it has to be sent to a track to test if it got what it takes to beat the Bugatti Veyron’s speed record.
And so, in September 13 2007, the SSC Ultimate Aero made its run for the record. Using FIA rules of getting the average speed from 2 runs in opposite directions, it got an average top speed of 256 mph, enough to obtain the world record that even Guinness recognizes as legit. This car held the record for almost 3 years until the Super Sport, an updated version of the Veyron, set a 267 mph top speed.
There is no denying the SSC Ultimate Aero’s potential. Once the world’s ultimate car, it should remain as one of the best supercars that ever existed.
|Vehicle Type: Super Sport Coupe||Base Price: $970,000.00|
|Length: 176.2 in. (447.5 cm)||Width: 82.7 in. (210 cm)|
|Height: 43.0 in. (109 cm)||Wheel Base: 105.2 in. (267 cm)|
|Dry Weight: 2750 lbs (1247 kg)||Ground Clearance: 4.0 in. (10 cm)|
|Luggage Capacity: 2.6 cu ft||Maximum Seating: 2 people|
|Engine: SSC Designed V8||Displacement: 387.2 cu in|
|Horsepower: 1287 HP||Max RPM: 6075 RPM|
|Torque: 1112 lb-ft @ 6150 rpm||Transmission: 6-Speed Manual|
|0-60 mph: 2.78 seconds||Tested Max. Speed: 257.4 mph (414 km/h)|
Guinness World Record Run reach 255.8mph
Exclusive look at the SSC Ultimate Aero
Test drive of the Ultimate Aero by Shelby Supercars
Snapshots of 2009 SSC Ultimate Aero and Older SSC Models