Humankind has long dreamed of flying automobiles. Every once in a while, Smosa sees a POC pop up on the radar only to fade into the news archives. The dreams of the past have promised us a flying car by now, so where is it?
One such invention is Klein Vision's AirCar which reaches a velocity of about 108kt (200km) and an elevation of about 1,000ft per flight. The inventor hopes to shift by mid-2012 from road to aircraft in less than 3min.
Since the 1989 Velvet Revolution in Czechoslovakia, a university professor of architecture, Klein has focused on his idea. The version that was released is its fifth and in progress since the company was founded in 2016 by Klein and his co-founder Anton Zajac.
On the road the AirCar looks very much like a sporting car with a two-seater low incline, other than a pusher between a double-boom tail supporting vertical rudder stabilisers. The stabilizers have a horizontal lift relation. In flying mode it extends hydraulically as the 3.3 m (10.8ft), until reaching a horizontal position, from the fuselage.
The model is powered by a BMW 1.6 liter six-cylinder motorcycle motor with a speed of 140hp (104kW), which is connected to the propeller supplied by local company DM Prop in the flying mode. The steering wheel is transferred to the yoker connected to the control surfaces by a turn. "It's like a plane in aircraft mode," Klein says.
The four-wheel undercarried concept produces a self-lifting fuselage that supplies 27% of the lift. Slovakia has a rich legacy of light aircraft dating back to communist times. The composite aircraft weighs 1.100 kg and can hold a load of 200 kg.
Klein Vision plans flight testing for nearly 50 hours. A profitable investor in a variety of firms, Zajac, measures the need for a certification amounting to EUR 2 million ($2.32 million) to begin a production process, with another EUR 2-4 million.
While the company will partner with "strategic investors," it says that there is ample financial support to complete the project in-house.
Terrafugia to be purchased in 2017 by China's Zhejiang Geely, is the group that owns Lotus and Volvo cars. New Hampshire is first American State to allow flying vehicles, flying with a licensed pilot, and only departing and landing at airports.
Uber has a conspicuous interest in the self-flying vehicle market. Santa Cruz Joby Aviation announced a new investment from Uber as it acquires Uber Elevate. Joby is working to create air taxis that will join the ride-hailing industry. Uber had previously invested $50 million into Joby in January.
JoeBen Bevirt is The founder and CEO of Joby Aviation Inc. He's been trying to develop a new form of short-hop aircraft for nine years. Bevirt says thousands will shuttle people across towns one day from these sky cabs. On February 1, Joby revealed a new venture funding of $100M, more than three times the amount of money he had earned. A lot more populated than a few years ago is the world of air taxis.
Joby says that it is planning to mass-produce its air taxi for its ride-hailing service. Chairman of the Board Dara Khosrowshahi: "I think it's going to happen within the next 10 years" Jet Blue's Simi tells her that she views Joby in the aerospace industry to become a part of everyday life, a way of making more intimate forms of aviation. Every travel, he said, is as costly for Uber or Lyft rides today and the air taxis will ultimately be entirely self-employed. It is the Federal Aviation administration and the taxi public to persuade Joby that air taxis are safe. Joby CEO Paul Sciarra, the co-founder of Pinterest's image-centric wish list platform, notes that "Our mission is to save one billion people an hour a day."
The company has invested in the German air taxi startup, which develops an electric jet that can fly hundreds of people 1,000 miles. Pinterest has invested the German air taxis in Joby and two new airline companies, including Volocopter GmbH and Zunum Aeros.