WATCH: Elon Musk fires his car, and his rocket, into space
SpaceX's big new rocket has blasted off on its first test flight, carrying a red sports car on an endless road trip past Mars.
The Falcon Heavy rocket rose Tuesday at around 3:45 p.m. from the same Florida launch pad used by NASA nearly 50 years ago to send men to the moon. With liftoff, the Heavy became the most powerful rocket in use today.
The three boosters and 27 engines roared to life at Kennedy Space Center, where thousands gathered to watch the launch which had been delayed by high wind.
Two of the boosters are recycled and programmed to return for another touchdown on land. The third is brand new and has its sights on an ocean platform.
SpaceX chief executive Elon Musk owns the rocketing Tesla Roadster, which is aiming for a solar orbit reaching Mars.