Man, that car can really fly.
No really. It can fly.
AeroMobil, a Slovakian engineering company, on Wednesday released its plans for the 5.0 VTOL (for vertical take-off and landing), which, unlike many other designs for “flying cars,” really is more of a car.
The thing that distinguishes the AeroMobil from many other designs is that drivers would be able to drive it on streets as a car, and shift it into flying mode. Many other planned “flying taxis,” such as one being designed by Bell Helicopter and rideshare company Uber, are essentially enormous drones that can carry passengers, or small autonomous helicopters.
Aeromobil, however, is showing off a flying car design that looks more like, well, a car.
“The company solves the first-to-last mile of personal air transportation, because users are able to switch smoothly between flight and driving mode,” Aeromobil said in a press release on its concept.
“AeroMobil aims to lead the industry with the most comprehensive door-to-door flying car solution covering the first-to-last mile in all weather conditions, for short, medium and longer distances up to 700km in a single journey,” the company said.
The 5.0 is designed for urban travel because of its vertical take off and landing capability. The company earlier announced a 4.0 that needs a short runway, that’s aimed more at inter-city travel – that’s what gets you to the 700 kilometer figure the company is touting.
“We see flying cars as versatile vehicles that both fly and drive, which is what we will be able to offer with the AeroMobil 4.0 STOL and AeroMobil 5.0 VTOL concept,” said Douglas MacAndrew, CTO of AeroMobil. “We plan to deliver the vehicles with the range needed for urban and intra-urban journeys, allowing customers to travel in any weather conditions while maximizing the efficiency for flying taxi operators.”
The 5.0 vehicle has two electric rotors, and also has an electric rear-mounted propeller for thrust. It seats four. While the car is being driven on the ground, it’s wings are folded in. They extend when it’s time to go airborne.
The company is aiming to go to market in the early 2020s.
The video below is of the 4.0