The 2015 Ford Mustang is aiming for great heights.
A scale model version of the new Mustang built by hobby car makers Revell has been sent into space using a weather balloon, reaching an estimated height of 110,000 feet (or 33.5 kilometres above the surface of Earth).
The flight reportedly lasted 74 minutes before the balloon burst and the model plummeted back to the ground – amazingly, with cameras still running. The team who launched the toy into the heavens used a GPS tracker to find where it landed.
Ford‘s San Francisco area sales manager Michael Sego worked on the flight plan with Steve Kubitz of Big Valley Ford in Stockton, California. The pair – supported by a number of fellow Mustang enthusiasts – came up with the idea to mark the Mustang’s 50th anniversary.
“We wanted to celebrate 50 years of Mustang and the impending arrival of the all-new 2015 Mustang by doing something really special,” Sego said. “Mustang has always been about getting behind the wheel and hitting the open road, but we decided to take to the open sky.”
Watch the video above to see how the journey panned out for the little red toy car.
Although not an official effort of Ford North America, US car companies have a history of assisting in space exploration.
Chrysler, for example, built the original Saturn rockets, which were constructed in a bespoke facility because the company’s car manufacturing plants weren’t big enough to support the size of the rockets.
The original Lunar Rover saw input from General Motors, too, with assistance on the wheels, motors and suspension for the moon buggy.
The Ford Mustang will go on sale in Australia in 2015.