As a result, the car was actually still accelerating when Webb backed off because of crosswinds. “Easily, there’s another 10mph in there, pushing it, maybe 15 more. It wasn’t one of those situations like when I did 245mph in the Koenigsegg where the last couple of miles an hour are really taking a long time. This was still pumping out miles per hour which was just crazy,” Webb told me.
In fact, Webb set more than one record in the Tuatara. In addition to the production car record for the two-way average, he also set a new “fastest flying mile on a public road” at 313.12mph (503.92km/h), “fastest flying kilometer on a public road at 321.35mph (517.16km/h), and “highest speed achieved on a public road” at 331.15mph (532.93km/h).
Driving a car at 330mph anywhere must be pretty eye-opening, but doing it on a two-lane road versus the wider six lanes of Ehra-Lessien sounds like it added an extra dose of adrenalin. “The weirdest sensation initially is that you’re on a road, and that dotted white line turning into a solid line. It’s almost like the Star Wars stars turning into these big long lines [when you engage a hyperdrive],” Webb said.
“In a fortunate way there was nothing in your peripheral vision there to distract you, so my eye gaze compared to when I’m in a race car was so far forward. Because if I look down or around, you just cover so much distance. You have to look quite far ahead but I would say the scariest thing wasn’t going that quick, it was trying to slow back down,” Webb said.
“Because the car’s setup to be quite slippery in a straight line, understandably, that amount of force of air coming over the car, you have to be so progressive with the throttle coming off of it. I lifted for around six or seven seconds and by the time I looked down I was still doing 280mph—so I’m still above the world record it—and I’m looking down expecting to see 100mph, and I look down and see 280 and your heart’s in your mouth thinking “I just need to slow down.” You want to slam the brakes on and make it all stop. But of course that’s the worst thing to do,” Webb explained.
Listing image by James Lipman