Flying cars might seem like the stuff of science fiction, but two prototypes were launched yesterday on the French Riviera, at an event showcasing “supercars” in Monaco.
Dutch and Slovak companies unveiled their designs as world premieres in the tiny well-heeled principality, where luxury automakers have gathered until Sunday for the Top Marques showcase event.
Bratislava-based Aeromobil, whose first prototype presented two years ago suffered an accident, is back with a “new generation” of flying vehicle named after the firm which makes it.
“We are taking reservations from today for deliveries expected in 2020, after the process of (regulatory) approvals is completed,” the Slovak firm’s spokesman Stefan Vadocz told AFP.
The Aeromobil vehicle, 6m long and with a fully-deployed span of 9m, is a normal four-wheeled car which can unfold its wings to transform itself into a plane able to fly two passengers at a cruising speed of 260kph for up to 750km.
The price? Between €1.2mn and €1.5mn, depending on options chosen.
Its Dutch rival for the futuristic vehicle type, the Pal-V Liberty, is the brainchild of Robert Dingemanse, whose company is based near Breda in the south of the Netherlands.
His crossover car-plane is more compact, at 4m long, and should be deliverable as early as next year.
He is already taking orders for a vehicle which will cost between €299,000 and €499,000.
The Dutch flying car is in fact a gyrocopter with three wheels and a retractable rotor.
It can carry two people at a cruising speed of 160kph for between 400-500km.
Users of the Aeromobil and the Pal-V Liberty will require both a driving licence and a pilot’s qualification.
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