We’re all aware of Toyota’s continued thrust to advance in the field of automotive technology. This can be seen in in ongoing move to perfect its plug-in hybrid electric vehicles, as well as push for hydrogen fuel cell technology. Yet it seems that the Japanese carmaker is not content with conducting research on earth as it has announced that it is scheduled to conduct vehicle fuel cell technology testing on the moon.
As if its partnership with the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) is not enough, it has likewise drawn up plans to develop a pressurized lunar vehicle that’s aptly named Lunar Cruiser. Yes, the Lunar Cruiser does trace its roots to the automaker’s iconic vehicle, which was likewise one of its very first offerings when it ventured into mainstream automobile production almost 70 years ago.
Toyota and JAXA have even mapped out a schedule that aims to have a Lunar Cruiser roaming the moon within the decade. It will start off this year with driving simulations for power and heat dissipation. This will also include trials for tires and interior arrangements within the vehicle.
By the year 2024. the design and engineering of the spaceship will begin, leading up to the 2029 public reveal (at the latest, of course). And by 2030, the Lunar Cruiser should be “cruising” on the moon.
Of course, this is hardly a cruise as it is no secret just how harsh a terrain the moon surface is. But with Toyota’s know-how when it comes to treading over surfaces where no roads hardly exist (as seen with the Land Cruiser), we’re quite sure that this shouldn’t be a problem.
Of course, all this remains to be seen. As Toyota itself says, it will definitely make sure that its team will come back to earth. Exciting times, indeed.