The future is finally here. And it looks ridiculous. No we’re not talking about the increasingly gaudy looking hybrid and electric vehicles taking our roads by storm. We are talking about flying cars. Now you may want to tell us to shut up about flying cars but the simple truth is that they are no longer just for movies and TV anymore. If you have the money and time to spare… you can start filling your garage(s) with cars that will take to the sky. Where you’re going, you will quite literally not need roads. Okay, that was an exaggeration, you are still going to need a runway of some kind. Regardless of the actual limitations of the very real flying cars that are out there, the fact that they even exist is as we’re sure, a fantasy made real. And it’s all thanks to a company out of Switzerland.
Pal-V: How Does the Flying Car Fly and Drive
Believe it or not, the world’s first ever commercially available flying car comes to us from a company called Pal-V. They made their debut on their home turf at Switzerland. And it looks…okay. We’re going to be honest, when we saw the words “flying car” we imagined something out of Back to the Future or Blade Runner. Some of the proposed concepts for flying cars look more like tiny seaplanes with four wheels. This Pal-V flying car instead looks like a helicopter and tricycle had an awkward child together. It will stand out of the crowd though perhaps not for all the right reasons. And yet still, the technological achievement is more than enough to earn it the praise it got.
The flying car from PAL-V is not gonna win any races with your average road car on the road. It only tops out at about 100 miles per hour on the ground. In the sky it only tops out at about 112 miles per hour. However it will still go the distance in the air up to 11,000 feet above the Earth’s surface. All the more notable is that even as it flies it has a range of 350 miles.
Takeoff and Landing the Pal-V
There are limits to this rather new piece of transportation technology. You won’t be making stransitions from the road to the air as seamlessly as decades of movies have predicted. However you won’d exactly need a full runway/landing strip either. You are going to have to manually adjust the vehicle from road mode to air mode and back again.
The entire transformation process from one mode to another takes a full 10 minutes. Landing is the trickier part as you really do need a lot of space before you land, to minimize the danger around you. Chances are if you’re taking off you know you have clear space too. Although you can still legally buy and ride this vehicle there are just as strict regulations for it and storing it as a small plane.
The First Ever Flying Car Can Be Yours: Buying the Pal-V
As of this writing there are only 2 main models for Pal-V’s flying car models. You have the personalized “Liberty Pioneer Edition.” That comes with a few interchangeable options for interior and tuning. The standard edition is called the “Liberty Sport Edition.” It probably has a fancy name so that those who don’t opt for the custom one don’t feel like they got a “lesser” model. Both of those names were chosen by Pal-V to imply a freedom to the skies. And if you want these they are now available for pre-order for delivery in 2019.
However they come at a big price. For one thing you must have access to an airstrip for use and storage. You also must have a pilot’s license in order to operate them. Now when it comes to the actual price tag, the Sport starts at $399,000 USD while the Pioneer starts at $599,000. The good news is that if you can afford either, Pal-V will give you flying lessons and help you earn your pilot’s license if you don’t already have one.
Flying cars are real and they can be yours, in theory. If you find that Pal-V’s innovative new vehicles are a little out of your budget and resources, for the time being the closest thing you have to taking your car into the air is the perilous navigation through potholes during construction season. What do you think of this interesting new tech? Do you think it’s the bee’s knees or do you think flying cars are for the birds? Let us know in the comments section below!