In a show of power, the Toyota Tundra will engage to pull a 1.36 lakh kgs space shuttle, the ‘Endevour’. The battle that still rages on between the pickup trucks from Toyota, Chevrolet, Ford and Ram, is seeing a new contender. Toyota may put rest of the party in dirt in this fiasco. In this extravagant marketing stunt, a showroom-stock 2012 Tundra CrewMax 1/2–ton pickup truck will tow the space shuttle ‘Endeavour’ to its final resting place at the California Science Center.
“Endeavour is the most recognizable icon of the U.S. space program, and to be towed by the Toyota Tundra is an incredible example of the capabilities of the truck, and an honor to be part of the history. The entire journey is something the world will be watching, and gives us a chance to prove that the ‘overbuilt’ Tundra is built to do any job,” Ed Lukes, vice president, Marketing, Toyota USA, said.
The Tundra was tested extensively prior to the announcement and the stunt will be achieved by towing the shuttle quarter mile at a time using a specially designed towing rig. Endeavour is to cover a journey of 12 miles from Los Angeles International Airport to the museum on October 13, and the Tundra will be helping the shuttle to its destination for the last quarter mile of this trip. The towing rig was prepared precisely for this event, allowing the Toyota Tundra to pull at least 30 times its regular towing capacity. The Toyota Tundra that will pull the Endeavour will not have any modifications or enhancements.
This program was developed in association with the Saatchi and Saatchi LA, the agency of record for Toyota, and the California Science Center, and will serve as an exceptional way to prove Tundra’s proficiencies and its towing power. Along with the Endeavour, in the exhibition that opens at the California Science Center on October 30, other airplanes and spacecraft including the capsule from the Gemini 11 mission and the Tundra that will tow the shuttle will be on display at the museum. A finish-line celebration at Exposition Park is planned to celebrate the success of this event.