Today, the space shuttle Endeavor reached its destination at the California Science Center, where it will forever be adored by visitors. The shuttle, which flew to space an astounding 25 times between 1992 and 2011, was towed from LAX to the science center by a Toyota Tundra truck. It is quite unimaginable to think that a pickup truck, albeit one that has 270 horsepower, can tow such a massive specimen. Not bad for a truck that ranked 5 out of 10 for 2012 Full Size Pickup Trucks.
So why the Toyota Tundra? Why not any of the four higher ranked full size pickups?
The California Science Center is why.
A loyal partnership between Toyota Motor Sales USA, Inc. and the California Science Center currently exists in order to provide support for public education through exhibits and programs. There is currently a Toyota Tundra on display at the science center in an exhibit dedicated to the physics of leverage. The new Tundra that towed the shuttle will soon replace the current exhibit one. The combination of the shuttle and the platform it laid upon weighed an amazing 80 tons. The journey to the science center from LAX took over two days and required excavating to welcome the shuttle through the streets. Such welcoming included tearing down trees and poles, prohibiting pedestrian use of sidewalks, and the moving of telephone poles and wires.
The shuttle will forever be an image of national pride as one of the most successful technological advancements in the nation’s history. It will go on display at the California Science Center later this month as will its workhorse, the Toyota Tundra that escorted it all the way from LAX to the science center, in an unbelievable and famous towing feat.