Drones

xCraft's 100-mph drone is about as fast as they come

xCraft's 100-mph drone is abou...
The Rogue beta is designed to exceed 100 mph
The Rogue beta is designed to exceed 100 mph
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Rogue comes as a kit or ready to fly
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Rogue comes as a kit or ready to fly
The Rogue starts at just $100 for the frame kit
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The Rogue starts at just $100 for the frame kit
The Rogue beta is designed to exceed 100 mph
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The Rogue beta is designed to exceed 100 mph
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American drone company xCraft previously impressed the TV sharks on Shark Tank with PhoneDrone, a quadcopter rig that turns a smartphone into a flying cockpit and camera. Now the startup is looking to impress drone racers with the beta version of its "Rogue" model, one of the fastest flyers we've seen.

The xCraft packs what the company calls a rear "booster" motor that allows the quadcopter to exceed speeds of 100 mph (160 km/h). The extra boost of power is activated with the flip of a switch that kicks the drone into high gear from regular racing mode.

In the world of FPV (first person view) drone racing, we've certainly heard of enthusiasts crafting drones that could keep pace with 100-mph competition, but the Rogue looks to be just about the fastest ready-to-race drone you can buy today. It's got at least 15 mph (24 km/h) on the Teal, perhaps the fastest production drone around until now.

xCraft is looking to appeal to both experienced drone builders and racers as well as newcomers to the sport with several different Rogue beta packages. Pros can purchase a basic frame kit for as little as US$100. A Rogue minus just the radio and receiver runs $550 and the ready-to-fly version is $700. For a full $1,000 the "Noob" package adds FPV googles, extra prop sets, two batteries and a charger to get started racing out of the box.

The key specs of the Rogue include a carbon fiber shell with 3 mm thick arms. The ready-to-fly package gets a RunCam Swift camera, 1,300 mAh battery and 5.8 GHz RHCP antenna with a 200 mW transmitter for audio and video.

You can see the Rogue in action and from FPV in the video below.

Product page: xCraft

Introducing the xCraft Rogue *Beta*

View gallery - 3 images
9 comments
Gaëtan Mahon
Meanwhile on the web some crazy dad is flying his custom built 200km/h mini quad.
riczero-b
Needs aerodynamic refinement; those rotor support arms could give lift at speed so the rotors could free-spin and save power to extend range
MQ
Not New, not novel.
Thrust line multicopters are fun and cool.
Come on Noobs... check out the mass purveyors of all things fun online, grab a generic CF frame, a few+2 ESC's, matching motors and props, plug in a Naze32, and camera and your're off slip on your generic goggles and it's below treeline fun time..
Just be aware of the regulations governing line of sight flight (spotter with control override- - doh that takes all the fun away) and you're good to go...
Actually that $1000 Noob price isn't really ALL that bad... but always good to buy just what you want to get used to using (buy well, buy once) rather than the first all-in kit that you see...
Booleanboy
As riczero-b suggests, this is the embodiment of why fixed-wing pilots regard helicopters as inelegant because they 'beat the air into submission". As a test bed designed to do one thing - race flat out for a very limited time - this an interesting concept but suspect that if the idea is to develop further, aerodynamics are going to have to be considered; air gets very thick above 100mph!
FintanCorrigan
This drone racing sure is growing. I see ESPN will be showing the Drone Racing League on one of their channels. Now what amazes me about all these racing drones, they are fast and acrobatic. However, none of these are very aerodynamic looking.
JamesDemello
I fly my epp wings at 100mph and they cost about 60 bucks. One motor beats 4 (or 5) in this case.
CharlieSeattle
Now these dammned things can kill. They should be banned
toyhouse
I wonder how designs like this will fit into drone racing? Seems like it could be a great thing in the straight sections or powering out of corners. I'm not sure that having an aerodynamically crude design would matter much for that purpose. Just guessing. If the idea is purely for speed, then as others here state, they need to clean up the air going around it.
Rorschach
At last, a flying brick.