We’ve heard of old Toyotas attaining high mileage numbers, but the Toyota Lunar Rover could take first prize.
Click here to check some alien-looking concept cars from the past.
Heading to space
The Japanese Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) has plans to go to the moon, and Toyota plans to help out. JAXA plans to land on the moon by 2029 and to do so it will need help from well-funded and expert partners, enter Toyota. According to news from earlier this week, Toyota and JAXA have already been collaborating on the manned, pressurised rover.
While Tesla founder, Elon Musk, launched his very own car into space, never to be seen again, the Toyota Lunar Rover will deal with the harsh realities of providing a safe and secure mobile home for astronauts. The 6 x 5 x 4 metre six-wheeled vehicle has living space for two in a sealed cabin that has to provide occupants with protection from harsh radiation and extreme temperatures.
The vehicle uses the Japanese automaker’s fuel cell vehicle technologies and would have a cruising range of more than 10 000 km on the surface of the moon. “Toyota’s fuel cells use clean power-generation methods and only emit water,” said Toyota Executive vice president Shigeki Terashi.
In their own words
“At JAXA, we are studying various scenarios as well as technologies that will be applied to specific space missions,” said JAXA vice president Koichi Wakata.
“Manned, pressurised rovers will be an important element supporting human lunar exploration, which we envision will take place in the 2030s. We aim at launching such a rover into space in 2029,” he added.
“I am extremely happy that, for this project, expectations have been placed on the thus-far developed durability and driving performance of Toyota vehicles and on our fuel cell environmental technologies,” commented Toyota CEO Akio Toyoda.