Early Lunar Rover Concepts

From the early days of the Apollo lunar landing program, NASA contractors studied a variety of concepts to provide mobility on the Moon’s surface. Some of these were odd. Bellcomm proposed adding wheels to the lunar module to create a mobile habitat that could be landed on the Moon first and then operated by a crew that would land nearby, then spend two weeks exploring the area in their lunar RV. This would, of course, have required two Saturn V launches per mission, but in the heady days of unlimited funds, that wasn’t seen as a problem.

The rover which was eventually built and flown was much less ambitious and capable, but could be carried in the lunar module’s payload bay, avoiding the need for a separate launch and lunar surface rendezvous.