It’s a bird. It’s a plane. It’s a flying car!
(This post originally appeared on The Washington Post)
Move over George Jetson, Google’s co-founder will be flying his car right by you.
A Silicon Valley start-up named Kitty Hawk (in homage to the Wright Brothers) has finally unveiled its flagship product: the Flyer. It’s a flying car. Oh, and you can buy it by the end of the year.
The car can take off vertically (as long as you’re over water), fly about 15 feet over water but, according to this CNN report, “looks less like a car than a jet ski with wings.” You can be the judge by watching this video here.
No price has been set for the Flyer but, The Verge reports that the company wants to entice “eager pilots with a $100 three-year membership that offers priority placement on a waiting list, company-branded gear, and exclusive access to a flight simulator and company events.” There will also be a $2,000 discount for members off its future retail price.
Kitty Hawk has its competition. Firms like Aeromobile and Terrafugia are working on their own Jetson-mobiles. These cars also rely on the vertical take-off and landing model like Kitty Hawk’s. Airline maker Airbus is developing a similar model, and Uber made its own flying car announcement Tuesday.
“We’ve all had dreams of flying effortlessly. I’m excited that one day very soon I’ll be able to climb onto my Kitty Hawk Flyer for a quick and easy personal flight,” Larry Page, Google’s co-founder who invested more than $100 million into the company and other flying car start-ups said in a statement provided to The New York Times and reported by CNN.
Because it’s considered to be an Ultralight aircraft (it only weighs 220 pounds and is powered by eight batter-operated propellers), the Federal Aviation Administration has already approved the car for use in “uncongested areas” and no, you will not need a license to fly one. If you’re ready to buy and then fly (the company says you can learn how in just “minutes”) – keep any eye on the company’s website.