Klein Vision's transforming AirCar makes first inter-city flight
After taking to the air for the first time just last year, Klein Vision's AirCar has now aced its first inter-city flight. The aircraft/road vehicle hybrid took off from Nitra airport early on June 28, landing in Bratislava a little over half an hour later, and then heading into the Slovakian capital by road.
As we mentioned back in December of last year, the AirCar is being developed by the original inventor and designer of the Aeromobil flying car, Professor Stefan Klein – under his own company, Klein Vision.
On the ground, it has the look of a Le Mans sportscar, but at the push of a button the tail extends out back and the wings rise up and out to make it ready for take off. All of this takes under three minutes and is mesmerizing to watch, as you can see in the video at the end.
It's already notched up more than 40 hours of flight time under the supervision of the Civil Aviation Authority, including rising to 2,500 m (8,200 ft), achieving a maximum cruising speed of 190 km/h (118 mph), undertaking 45-degree turns, and going through stability and maneuverability testing.
The current prototype makes use of "advanced composite materials" for its construction, features a 160-hp BMW engine, rocks a fixed propeller to the rear, and comes with a ballistic parachute in case something goes wrong. No other details have been shared at this stage.
For its first inter-city flight, the AirCar took to the skies from an airfield in Nitra, flew for 35 minutes to Bratislava International Airport to make its 142nd successful landing, and was then transformed into driving mode for a trip to downtown Bratislava.
"This flight starts a new era of dual transportation vehicles," said Professor Klein. "It opens a new category of transportation and returns the freedom originally attributed to cars back to the individual." Company co-founder Anton Zajac added, "AirCar is no longer just a proof of concept; flying at 8,200 feet at a speed of 100 knots, it has turned science fiction into a reality."
The company has also revealed a few scant details on the upcoming pre-production prototype, too. It will be equipped with a 300-hp engine, feature a variable-pitch prop, boast a cruise speed of 300 km/h (186.4 mph), and will have a range of 1,000 km (621 miles). Prototype 2 is expected to receive EASA CS-23 aircraft certification and a M1 road permit.
You can see highlights of the inter-city flight in the video below.
Source: Klein Vision