Dutch car company PAL-V is considered the first car company to successfully take its flying car off the ground.
The patented vehicle drives like a sports car with its slim, aerodynamic body that can fit 2 passengers. It runs on gasoline and has a foldable push propeller that directs it forward and is lifted off the ground by an auto-rotating rotor. The slow rotation of the rotor provides a quieter experience than helicopters and has short take-off and landing capabilities that allow drivers to land anywhere.
The PAL-V ONE can run at speeds up to 180 km/h, both on land and in the air. It flies below 4,000 feet allowing someone on the go to travel without interference from commercial air traffic. The two-seat car and gyroplane hybrid is set up to comply with existing road and air traffic regulations so it can travel anywhere. It also has a cutting-edge, ‘tilting’ system that glides like a motorcycle.
Another great thing about this flying car is its safety feature. In the event that the engine fails, the PAL-V ONE can safely land on the ground with the help of the auto-rotating rotor. The aircraft engine is flight certified and powered by gasoline. Other versions are also being developed so it can run on biodiesel or bio-ethanol.
In 2014, the PAL-V ONE flew over the Gilze Rijen Airport in the Netherlands, six years after the first prototypes were created. A few notable institutions involved in the project include the Dutch National Aerospace Laboratory, Delft University and the Dutch Ministry of Economic Affairs. PAL-V was launched by a group of Dutch entrepreneurs and industry leaders specializing in aviation, automotive, research, and marketing.
The company was picked by Maxim Magazine as their top pick for flying cars. PAL-V CEO Robert Dingemanse is proud to have his company recognized for the work they have done “to create a flying car that actually conforms to existing regulations and is safe to fly.” To drive the flying car, one needs a Sports Pilot License in the US or a Recreational or Private Pilot License in Europe.
With over 135,000 monthly searches on Google, the flying car is not just a concept from a Jetsons episode anymore. Today, so many are eager to know what’s next for the flying car industry and PAL-V has certainly made the first round in realizing this dream.
BBC reported that the company accepted its first batch of orders only from customers in the Netherlands. The first Pal-V One cars, at an estimated price of $395,000, started production in 2014 and set for delivery in 2016.
Today, the company has produced another model called PAL-V LIBERTY, a special limited edition that is set to cost €500,000. The company is said to produce only 90 of this flying car model with 45 reserved for the European market.