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RAY MASSEY: How far are the flying cars?

Unsatisfied with vehicles sticking to the road and driving tarmac, lucky varieties of pioneers have sought to give them wings to gracefully lift them into the air and over traffic.

Only a year has passed without the announcement of a bold new flying car venture, and the production version will inevitably be “only five years away.” But is a flying car a feasible and imminent reality? Or is it just a fancy flight?

Takeoff: Kleinvision Aircar heads to the sky for a 60/35 mile intercity flight between Nitra and Bratislava airports in Slovakia

Pure fiction

Fantasy flying cars prove an inspirational inspiration for those who seek the real thing.

The Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, created by James Bond writer Ian Fleming, is especially loved. Even 007 himself was hijacked by a flying car as a means of escape from the Order of Assassins Skalamanga in the 1974 movie The Man with the Golden Gun.

And in the science fiction movie “The Fifth Element,” Bruce Willis drives a flying taxi through many lanes of a flying car. Don’t forget the 1960s cartoon Jetson and TV puppeteer Gerry Anderson supercars.

Fantasy: Flying cars have proved inspiring inspiration for those who seek the real thing.

Fantasy: Flying cars have proved inspiring inspiration for those who seek the real thing.

Loft ambition

If you think a flying car is a modern invention, think again. Even Henry Ford, a pioneer in the automotive industry, wrote in 1940: A combination of planes and cars is coming. You may smile. But it will come. ”

The first generally accepted flying car was the Curtiss Autoplane, invented in 1917 by Glenn Curtiss, a pioneer in aviation and motorcycles. This was a triplane with the wings of a Curtis Model L trainer with an aluminum body similar to the Model T Ford.

Great Escape: James Bond was hijacked by a flying car when the villain Skala Manga flew in the 1974 movie The Man with the Golden Gun.

Great Escape: James Bond was hijacked by a flying car when the villain Skala Manga flew in the 1974 movie The Man with the Golden Gun.

There were three seats in the enclosed cabin, where the pilot or driver was sitting in front. Exhibited at the PanAmerican Aeronautical Exposition in New York City in February 1917, the exhibition was only a few hops before the United States entered World War I in April and finished development.

The 38-foot-wide Wingspan Arrowville flew into the air on March 21, 1937, powered by the Studebaker engine on the ground and in the air, flying at 112 mph and operating at 56 mph. rice field.

By 1949, the inventor Moulton’Molt’ Taylor had designed and manufactured Taylor Aerocar in Longview, Washington. On the road, I pulled the folded wings back. Only six have been built so far, but they are still considered one of the first practical flying cars.

City Slicker: Bruce Willis drives a flying taxi in the science fiction movie The Fifth Element

City Slicker: Bruce Willis drives a flying taxi in the science fiction movie The Fifth Element

The last remaining yellow and green model is at the Kissimmee Aviation Museum in Kissimmee, Florida. Some even flew Raul Castro, Fidel’s brother and former Cuba president, around Cuba. It was also used from 1961 to 1963 to monitor the traffic of radio stations in Portland, Oregon.

Above and Beyond

Other flying cars followed, but most could not take off commercially. For decades, Moller International has flagged frequently reported plans for skycar flying cars. However, so far, no unrestrained free flight has been made at the request of the authorities.

But lately, there have been many announcements. The Terrafusia Transition flying car was given a green light for takeoff by the US Federal Aviation Administration this year.

Futuristic: The cartoon space family Jetsons used a flying car to take a dog for a

Futuristic: The cartoon space family Jetsons used a flying car to take a dog for a “walk.”

A two-seater aircraft with a wingspan of 27 feet, equipped with a 100 hp fuel injection engine, can fly at altitudes of up to 10,000 feet and up to 100 mph over a range of about 400 miles. But don’t expect big changes from £ 300,000.

In July of this year, Kleinvision Hovercar flew for a 60-mile intercity flight lasting 35 minutes between Nitra and Bratislava airports in Slovakia.

Inspired by Professor Stefan Klein, a two-seater flying car with a fixed propeller and retractable folding wings, it transforms a sports car into a 620-mile range, 120mph maximum speed, and cruising plane in just 2 minutes and 15 seconds. .. Altitude 8,200 feet.

The Slovak-based AeroMobil flying car, arriving in 2023, has a talented lineage in the European automotive industry, including former McLaren supercar CEO Antony Sheriff.

With over 10,000 miles of hands-on and simulated in-flight testing and a wingspan of 30 feet, it has a driving range of 320 miles (maximum speed 100mph) and a flight distance of 420 miles (maximum speed 160mph).

In the air: Hyundai Motor Group's future vision is to fly a taxi that carries passengers across the city.

In the air: Hyundai Motor Group’s future vision is to fly a taxi that carries passengers across the city.

The huge Hyundai Motor Group is accelerating the creation of flying taxis as part of its wider mobility ambitions. In January 2020, a Korean automaker partnered with Uber to establish the Urban Air Mobility Division (named Supernal), which announced a prototype electric vertical takeoff and landing (eVTOL) flying car.

Since then, Hyundai has announced plans for a sophisticated version of the flying car that uses electric and fuel cell technology.

In the New Year, Hyundai will demonstrate Coventry’s world’s first city airport, Air One, as one of 65 sites in the United Kingdom, mainland Europe, the United States and the Asia-Pacific region to accommodate flying cars. It’s a schedule.

The idea is for passengers to travel by car or train from their home to the plane taxi “Bertyport” and ride an electric scooter across the town using a single app such as the “Ride Share” platform. Is to plan.Last mile

Jiwon Singh, President of Hyundai Motor Group, Chief Executive Officer of Supernal and who worked for NASA for 30 years, said: ‘

As a congratulations, I have in the past asked the top designers of the world’s leading car companies to devise a 21st century solution for one person who can actually use a flying car. Overnight, given the amount of luggage he has to deliver.

Instead of Santa’s sleigh, like Rudolph, Donner, Blitzen, and other reindeer, they’ve always been ingenious, from sophisticated futuristic Ford to Vauxhall’s “Klauza” and Bentley’s “Flying B.” I am surprised. You can make retirement easier.

So, like Santa flying in the sky, Merry Christmas to everyone.

Nissan Bluebird is the future “New Bird”

Nissan’s Sunderland plant is celebrating 35 years of production with a new custom version of the first Bluebird car with a pure electric motor. In honor of the two vehicles that tell the history of the factory, we call the one-off project car New Bird.

The range of the vehicle from one charge is estimated to be about 130 miles, and the acceleration from rest to 62mph is less than 15 seconds. The battery can be recharged up to 6.6kW and the original driver instrument panel is connected to the EV system so that the fuel gauge can display the battery charge level.

Past and Present: Sunderland's Pride

Past and Present: Sunderland’s Pride

Nissan said: The remodeling is project managed by Kinghorn Electric Vehicles, a family-owned company based in Durham, specializing in remodeling from classic cars to full electric.

George Kinghorn said: “I think we created a car that captures the soul of the Nissan Bluebird, with the heart of the Nissan Leaf.

“When Nissan opened its Sunderland plant, it gave the northeast a great financial boost. Electric cars are not just in the future, but now!”

Since its opening in 1986, the Sunderland plant has manufactured more than 10.5 million vehicles.

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RAY MASSEY: How far are the flying cars?

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