If the powers-that-be had ever shown any faith in G.I. Joe, that would have to be the Defiant. No other piece of equipment could trump the justification having a space shuttle for military operations. The threat of Cobra knows no bounds. The Joes must be ready even if it takes them beyond the skies... to the stars.
The Defiant is a large shuttle complex consisting of a moving gantry, the Crawler, that is able to elevate and launch the shuttles from any locationy. The shuttles consist of a booster and a smaller shuttle that sits atop it.
Real American Hero continuity
Marvel Comics Continuity
The Defiant first appeared in issue #65, in which it was used to prevent a Cobra shuttle from attacking a satellite that was picking up data on a secret event happening on Earth.
The Defiant playset is one of the larger R.A.H. toys that was released, consisting, in three parts, of the smaller shuttle, the booster shuttle, and the gantry/platform, all of which could be separate parts capable of detaching or attaching from/to one another. Both shuttles opened up to reveal interior playset areas that included computer terminals, walkways, and, in the case of the smaller shuttle, a crane arm. Both shuttles were armed with laser cannons, and the gantry was outfitted with a number of turrets. The launch pad on the gantry could be raised to a vertical position for launch, revealing the interior facilities of the base, with a number of pegs for character placement.
The smaller shuttle had retractable landing gear.
The set is the only Joe vehicle to come with two figures; Hardtop, the Gantry driver, and Payload, the astronaut.