In something perhaps out of a James Bond movie or The Jetsons iconic animated TV sitcom, a European engineering company plans to unveil a flying car at an auto show in Monaco on April 20.
Nearly three decades in development, including several prototypes, the AeroMobil flying car supposedly can run on regular gas with a range of 310 miles before filling up the tank (430 miles in the air). This futuristic invention, which is scheduled to go to market for pre-orders later this year, seats two and is about 26 feet wide and 19 feet long when it morphs into an airplane. With its wings retracted, the flying car is said to be able to fit in an ordinary parking space.
AeroMobil has yet to announce the price of its invention, which is powered by a hybrid engine. Motorists will presumably need a driver’s license and a pilot’s license to operate the flying car. The company indicated that it will provided more specs, including how much the flying car costs, during a press conference at Top Marques Monaco. (RELATED: Read more about unique inventions at HealthRangerInventions.com.)
In a statement, the company explained that the vehicle combines the functionality of a luxury sports car and a light aircraft in compliance with applicable regulations. “AeroMobil aims to make personal transportation vastly more efficient and environmentally friendly by helping to overcome traffic jams in large areas and by allowing significantly faster door-to-door travel for medium distances or in areas with limited road infrastructure.”
With a light-steel framework and carbon coating, it weighs 992 pounds. The Slovakian startup indicated that a self-driving/flying version is also in the works.
“We got a positive feedback from several experts in avionics, which appreciated design and the technical solution of the process of transformation,” said AeroMobil co-founder and CEO Juraj Vaculik.
The company also noted that the new model incorporates hundreds of design and engineering improvements over the 2015 prototype unveiled that year at the Pioneers Festival in Vienna, Austria.
“The vehicle itself is a completely integrated aircraft, as well as being a fully-functioning four-wheeled car, powered by hybrid propulsion. The hope is that, by offering the best of both worlds, users can choose between either taking the road or air to work,” Digital Trends observed about the flying car that is soon to be the world’s first commercially available vehicle of its kind.
There are at least a few doubts as to the viability of the flying car’s success. Some dissenters noted that a plane typically has to be lighter to take off while a car has to be heavier and sturdier to be safe to drive. Once the flying car officially goes to market, aeronautical and/or automotive experts will be able to give it a test drive. In the meantime, your mileage may vary, as the saying goes.