There’s much talk about flying cars but the simple fact is that cars don’t make good aeroplanes and vice versa. To make one vehicle perform on the road and in the air means huge compromises for both. However, one company has come pretty close and that’s AeroMobil, which has just shown off its latest flying car which the Slovakian company says it is putting into production.
Limited production, mind you, and at between €1.2m and €1.5m, it will be out of reach for all but a select few. Those few will be able to have an flying car in the year 2020, says AeroMobil. The first 25 will be ‘Founders Edition’ models with special features and benefits, and AeroMobil says it will build 500 in total.
Salt, pinch of.
AeroMobil says the flying car is designed to have stable and predictable characteristics with a flight envelope comparable with existing small aircraft.
The vehicle’s cockpit surrounds the pilot and co-pilot in a high strength monocoque structure capable of absorbing and distributing crash and impact energy while maintaining interior integrity. It also incorporates the very latest in vehicle recovery ballistic parachute technology.
While travelling on the road, the occupant restraint system uses pyrotechnic seatbelt technology in conjunction with dual-stage airbags. These systems are equally capable of offering occupant protection should the vehicle get into difficulties while operating as a plane.
“This launch is a triumph of engineering and design, requiring all our creativity, imagination, passion and technical expertise to deliver an innovative product that is truly ground-breaking,” said Douglas MacAndrew, Chief Technology Officer, AeroMobil.
“The outcome is a flying car that combines innovative features with a recognisable, high quality experience that pilots and drivers have come to expect.”
The flight control systems transform into automotive controls in seconds with absolute predictability and confidence, says AeroMobil. Power is from a custom 2.0-litre turbocharged 4-cylinder boxer engine delivering close to 300hp and controlled by FADEC (fully autonomous digital electronic control).