Elon Musk Wants Space Stations On Mars & The Moon: Rival General Motors Could Build Lunar Vehicle That Carries The Astronauts

Benzinga ·  Apr 10 14:36

Those who follow the exploits of Elon Musk are likely familiar with the Tesla CEO's other business ventures, including SpaceX.

But for all the billionaire's talk about colonizing Mars and the moon, it's a Tesla rival moving forward with plans to power lunar vehicles.

What Happened: NASA recently announced that three teams are developing a lunar terrain vehicle to take astronauts to the Moon. Among the companies working on a lunar vehicle are Intuitive Machines (NASDAQ:LUNR), the company that recently helped the U.S. land on the Moon for the first time since 1972.

One of the other teams developing a lunar vehicle is Lunar Outpost, a contractor partnering with General Motors (NYSE:GM), Lockheed Martin (NYSE:LMT), Goodyear Tire (NASDAQ:GT) and MDA Space.

According to InsideEVs, the lunar terrain vehicle from the team could be powered by the Ultium technology used by GM for its electric vehicles like the Chevrolet Blazer EV, GMC Hummer EV and Cadillac Lyriq.

Other teams include companies like Intuitive Machines, Boeing, Michelin, Northrop Grumman, Axiom Space and Odyssey Space Research.

The teams will work on a yearlong study for the development of the vehicle, with a requirement including being able to be remotely controlled in case astronauts can't control the vehicle.

NASA will likely pick one winning team and work with them to develop the vehicle before it heads to the Moon.

"With a rich legacy supporting our nation's space program, General Motors is thrilled to support American astronauts once again as they embark on this important mission to the moon," a GM spokesperson was quoted saying by Automotive News.

Related Link: Elon Musk Celebrates US 'Landing On The Moon' For First Time Since 1972 – 'Congrats'

Why It's Important: The moon landing in early 2024 may have increased aspirations to get astronauts back to the lunar surface.

NASA wants to take astronauts to the Moon in 2026 and would like to have a new vehicle for them to help get around on the surface. Artemis I was deployed in November 2022 and is set to be followed with Artemis II as early as September 2025 and Artemis III as early as September 2026.

Musk has often feuded with billionaire and founder Jeff Bezos over the two billionaire's space aspirations.

If a vehicle made with General Motors electric vehicle technology ends up being selected as the winning lunar vehicle, it could lead to the rivalry between the two automotive companies also shifting over to space.

SpaceX has several contracts in place with NASA including for the Artemis project, which means that Musk's space company could someday transport a GM made vehicle to the Moon.

Image: Pixabay

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