Toyota Tundra to tow space shuttle

September 13, 2012 12:00 AM

The space shuttle Endeavor may have made its last journey into outer space, but it's about to take another trip out to California and will use the Toyota Tundra to get there.

The Toyota Tundra full-size pickup truck has been chosen as the vehicle to tow the space shuttle to its final home at the California Science Center. While the shuttle will make the majority of its 12-mile journey on its own, the Tundra is needed to maneuver the 300,000 pound craft for the final quarter mile.

Toyota claims that it ran extensive tests took place ahead of the announcement to ensure the truck would be capable of handling such a heavy load. In the end, the 2012 Tundra CrewMax half-ton pickup chosen is identical to models currently sold in dealerships.

No special modifications, vehicle maintenance or other changes have been made to increase power. The model Tundra has a maximum towing capacity of 10,000 pounds, and the Endeavor will be towed on a dolly engineered specifically for this haul.

The Endeavor currently resides at the Los Angeles International Airport and will leave for the science center on October 13. Once there, it will star in its own exhibit on space exploration for the foreseeable future. 

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