A  Toyota Tundra half-ton pickup truck without any special modifications  successfully towed the space shuttle Endeavour and custom-built dolly -- a  combined weight of nearly 300,000 pounds -- across a bridge spanning the  nation's busiest freeway on Friday night, Oct. 12. The tow was a result of a  20-year partnership between Toyota and the California Science Center to raise  awareness of the space program and continue public education through exhibits  and events. 
  The shuttle's 12-mile route over city streets to its new home at the California  Science Center includes one passage over the 405 Freeway. The Tundra assisted  in the transport of the Endeavour as it journeyed over the Manchester Boulevard  Bridge?an area that required a lighter tow mechanism than other portions of the  route for weight distribution purposes. Toyota did extensive testing and worked  with the Sarens Group, a heavy lifting and engineering transport company, to  develop a dolly to move the Endeavour over the bridge.
  The model selected was a stock 2012 Tundra CrewMax 4x4 with Toyota's 5.7-liter  iForce V8, producing 381 horsepower. All Tundra trucks are produced exclusively  at Toyota Motor Manufacturing, Texas in San Antonio. The truck used to tow the  Endeavour was purchased from a Southern California Toyota dealer, with no  modifications or special equipment added for the tow. 
  The Tundra was piloted by longtime Toyota professional driver Matt McBride.  Riding along was Garrett Reisman, one of the astronauts aboard the orbiter when  it traveled to the International Space Station in 2008. From start to finish,  it took about five minutes to cross the bridge.
  "I'm honored to be part of the space shuttle Endeavour's final mission to the  California Science Center," said Garrett Reisman, an engineer and former NASA  astronaut. "I appreciate Toyota's support in helping bring this space icon home  to the Southern California community." 
  The Science Center has a popular working exhibit utilizing a Tundra that  demonstrates the physics of leverage. The Tundra used to tow the shuttle will  replace the existing truck when the Endeavour exhibit opens on Oct. 30, 2012.

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Toyota of Richardson

1221 N Central Expressway
Directions Richardson, TX 75080

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