Mars Rover Concept Vehicle for NASA Astronauts Unveiled

Futuristic six-wheeled vehicle reveals space's agency vision for the red planet.

June 7, 2017 3:24 pm
Concept for NASA's Mars Rover Vehicle (Kennedy Space Center)
Concept for NASA's Mars Rover Vehicle (Kennedy Space Center)

NASA may have borrowed the concept for its next Mars Rover vehicle from Batman.

Rolling right out of a futuristic comic book or a scene from a sci-fi movie, the rover concept for NASA’s Mars mission was unveiled at the Kennedy Space Center Tuesday.

The six-wheeled vehicle measures 28 feet long by 13 feet wide and stands 11 feet tall. The SUV-style rover would seat four astronauts with room in the back for a mobile laboratory. It can reach speeds of up to 70 miles per hour on Earth, and 15 mph on Mars.

Though the new-look Mars Rover may resemble the Batmobile, the concept has was designed by Shanon and Marc Parker, prop designers for Tron and other Hollywood films. The slightly spherical wheels, which resemble those seen on the light bike from the futuristic film, are airless—and specially designed for rugged terrain.

For now, the rover concept is on display at the Kennedy Space Center’s “Journey to Mars” exhibit. CBS News reports NASA has plans to launch the rover in 2020.

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