The trouble with these 2-in-1 devices is, because of compromises, they often aren't good at either function. So this is a lousy overpriced car and a terrible airplane. The fact that it's two machines in one doesn't help the situation... They used to have console stereo systems that had a TV tube & tuner, a record player, a radio, and a hi-fi all in one. If any part of it quit working, all of it had to go to the shop!!! Or like a tablet that's also a phone and a camera. It's too small to be a good tablet and simultaneously too big to be a good phone, and the camera sensor doesn't give good photography. I could go on and on...
David Clarke
I think this design looks very nice. I expect insurance would be pretty high. I wonder if an owner would be tempted to take off from a motorway. So much easier than finding an airport! I couldn't see how the folded wings got past the tailfins when they went into the flying position. Which is more economic all, road travel or air travel? Bear in mind, you have to travel to an airstrip.
I agree; however, you have to keep in mind your priorities.
This is a prototype, and not only that, it's an experiment. Flying cars will need to progress a lot before they become commercially viable, but this could be said about all designs and inventions. The light bulb was terribly inefficient the first time Edison made it, but as the years go by, and more people take the plunge and try something, no matter how it turns out the first time, we eventually build up the experience to turn the concept into a fully-fledged and useful product. If we didn't start somewhere, we wouldn't go nowhere.
You're judging the car by production standards. And anyway, it looks cool!
Vincent Bevort
Did you look at the razor sharp tail? I don't understand that can be road legal.
Carbon fiber has bankrupted every aircraft manufacturer who has dared touching it. Burt Rutan is the exception that confirms the rule. Boeing with its model 787, largely built from carbon fiber and with +1000 orders is not even sure to make a profit. So Aeromobil should stick to the old test and true method of aluminum sheet and rivets. As pointed out by Grunchi, it’s not going to be a good plane nor a good car, there are too many compromise, so I don’t think that there is a commercial future for this project, except perhaps for some emirs or son of emirs in the Gulf states with too much money burning a hole in theirs pocket.
I think that is a really nice design. I can see the creators aritistic talent in its design. I hope he gets the funding to make it. Of the flying cars out there, this is - IMO - the nicest looking one.
My Dad had an idea for something like this. His ideas was to have the gas engine connected to a generator and have the wheels and propeller connected to electric motors. To swich from one to the other only required a switch and not complicated gears and/or drive shafts.
Grunchy, I don't think the problem is whether or not it is excellent at both functions, but its more of a question of what transportation need is this trying to fill? Is the solution intended to satisfy the daily commuter? The weekend city-hopper? The business executive who oversees multiple geographically distributed facilities? Or the globe-trotting adventurer? Until there is a viable market, the product will be a hard sell.
And, I'm not saying there's not one for this... I get the impression that the greatest cry for these sorts of solutions come from the multitudes of average, middle-class, working blokes who have a seething hatred for traffic jams and stop lights. (If for some reason this is unfamiliar to you, simply rent the movie "Office Space" for a humorous demo.)
But as for striking the proper balance of capability for road vs. air, I would definitely lean heavily in the direction of air-worthiness. This, unfortunately, leaves road-worthiness relegated to the realm of neighborhood-only capability (ie. keep it off the freeways, eh?) But, I feel this is okay, assuming the air part included VTOL or STOL features, and the aforementioned neighborhoods contain designated take-off & landing zones.
Then, we get back to the notion of mass-market... not sure I like the idea of traffic jams in the airways.
Kaido Tiigisoon
I would see those as a rental craft. Because their main use is NOT to have one vehicle and save money from owning 2, but the cross-country traveler who wants to connect some airfields by air and some by ground.
It is so fantastic to see those who dare to try the near impossible that will become main stream. Perhaps the answer to the flying car is to take a small great plane and find a way to make it street legal. I know I'd be much more concerned about the flying ability than driving!
[Perhaps you might be interested in the PD-2 conversion kit, at - Ed.]
Richard Auchus
What ever happened to the PAL-V? That thing looked probably the most promising out of any other flying car, next to the Maverick.