Imagine taking a trip to see the spectacular views around the United States and not worrying about fighting traffic? Or what about seeing the same sites you’ve seen hundreds of times, but from a viewpoint you’ve never been able to look from before. Sounds like a fantasy, right? Well, not anymore.
Although it seems the entire automotive universe is enthralled with the concept of developing self-driving cars, there are other engineers who have dedicated quite a lot of time working on flying cars. And while most people keep talking about the ‘Flying Cars of the Future’, they’ve never really seen the possibility.
Thanks to Dutch developer PAL-V International, drivers now have access to flying cars. The company and manufacturer has officially begun taking orders for its products, the Liberty Sport and Liberty Pioneer.
The Airbus group has stated that they’re developing a self-piloted flying car in order to ease congestion in busy urban areas. Their model is a flying taxi that passengers could summon, simply with the help of their smartphone.
Although they are taking the development seriously, and even accepting orders, the Airbus company is still in the experimentation phase.
Meanwhile, the PAL-V International is a two-seater hybrid craft which, according to the reports, currently costs $400,000. The three-wheeled vehicle is also reported to have the comfort of a car and the agility of a motorcycle on the road, with a cutting-edge, ‘tilting’ system. It can hit 100mph while on the road or up to 112mph in the air where its maximum operational altitude is about 11,480 feet.
One of the most amazing features and sights to be seen is the transformation from a running car to a flying vehicle—all of which takes only five to 10 minutes. Most of this conversion process is done by the vehicle’s Semi-Automatic Conversion System, and the driver/pilot is left with simply unfolding the Liberty’s rotor blade, propeller, and tail manually.
While the company attested to all these facts, they also stated that the Liberty’s operator must have both a driver’s and pilot’s license to make full use of the two forms of the vehicle. This is because the craft uses existing aviation technology, and as such, anyone legally allowed to fly can jump into the cockpit. Additionally, a 10-to-15-minute pre-flight inspection should be carried out before entering any airspace.
PAL-V International’s hard work seems to have paid off as the company is said to have received interest from hospitals, government institutions, and the tourism sector.
They also believe these vehicles could free up some of our government’s budget. With flying, the U.S. won’t need to pour billions of dollars into concrete bridges and roads.
With these new flying vehicles, travelers will be able to cross peninsulas, lakes, and rivers to explore new destinations, and take sightseeing to a whole new level. This project seems to be something that touches both everyday drivers, as well as larger corporations that would benefit from a flying vehicle.
We’ll all continue to watch as this unfolds, and begins to take some of the attention away from the self-driving vehicle phenomenon.