An experimental copy of a flying car was unveiled in California by a company called Opener, the BBC writes. According to the manufacturer, the vehicle called BlackFly can do 40 kilometers at a time and have a maximum speed of 100 kilometers per hour. It is moved by two small engines on two wings, and can accommodate one person in the cabin.
The Opener is funded by Google co-founder Larry Page, as is a company called Kitty Hawk, which runs on a flying engine. The development of both companies would be more accurate to talk about the ability to transport people per drone, in the traditional way, meaning they cannot be used on the road, only in the air.
The company says you won’t need a license to use BlackFly, but passenger pilots will have to do a training before they dive in and fly with it. This will certainly not hurt, because the vehicle can be steered manually in all three directions of the space, but it will also be able to drive on its own, according to CEO Marcus Leng.
The first BlackFly models will still be expensive, but the company says over time they won’t cost more than a sports car.
Of course, for a while, most of these vehicles will not be very much encountered in practice. In fact, this whole aerospace is not as far away as we might think: experts say it could be done in two decades thanks to new, lightweight materials, stronger batteries and more advanced computer control. And the business model could be freight sharing, which can help with the problem that once they’re done, flying cars will be hellishly expensive at first for a person to just buy one for themselves.
The other issue is that you have to figure out the details of how to operate such a car reliably (it is basically inconvenient to stop the engine, but it is even more macerous than usual in the air); nor is it clear what the TRAFFIC will do with vehicles flying over people and cities.