Toyota unveils autonomous lunar rover in space tech push

Toyota unveils autonomous lunar rover in space tech push

Mubasher: At the time when a slew of auto manufacturers are working on off-road vehicles, Toyota eyes travelling to the moon.

The car giant joined forces with Japan’s space agency JAXA to make an self-driving fuel cell-powered electric lunar rover that aimed to be launched into the outer space in 2029.

The moon buggy, which is still in the conceptual stage, can carry two people, and go thousands of miles across the moon surface, Toyota said.

The vehicle will be designed to enable astronauts to live in it without the need for spacesuits, and will be 6 metres long, the car company added.

Since last summer, Toyota has been exploring the possibility of building a rover, but it signed a new agreement this week to accelerate the project.

 “Manned rovers with pressurised cabins are an element that will play an important role in full-fledged exploration and use of the lunar surface,” JAXA’s President Hiroshi Yamakawa said.

Fuel cell electric vehicles can travel much longer than battery-powered cars before the need to recharge, an aspect that makes the technology more suitable for moon journeys, according to the Japanese car titan.