Issued in 1962 and 1963, they invariably showed this car being used as a lift for astronauts to reach the space capsule located at the tip of a rocket on the No. 3413 Mercury Capsule Launching Car.
Lionel used the 5211-2 mold for this car that is similar to the No. 3512 Fire Ladder Company Car. However, unlike this car, there is a pin in the base of the ladder swivel that prevents its rotation for more than just a few degrees. The reason that Lionel did this was to prevent the car from tipping over from the weight of the "astronaut cage." If the ladder swings to the side then this pin is broken. The arm extends to twice its length.