Who can forget the childhood delight in watching the “Jetsons,” “Flubber” or “Back to the Future” fly across the city skies in their flying cars?
An Israeli company is now in the process of putting electric powered flying cars on the road, and in the sky, already by 2025. In a report by Calcalist, Guy Kaplinsky, chairman of the Israel-based startup NFT Inc., said that he believes autonomous flying cars will solve city road congestion.
Wealthy businesspeople can use helicopters to avoid traffic and move easily between cities. But this is costly and complicated and reserved only for the very rich. Kaplinsky has deigned a flying electric car that costs a fraction of a private helicopter flight and could be available to anyone wanting to avoid spending hours on busy city roads and highways.
NFT’s vehicle called Asaka, or “flying bird” in Japanese, requires only about 25 meters (80 feet) for a takeoff lane. The car’s propellers and collapsible wings fold into the vehicle’s roof. The first cars will be able to carry up to three people for 550 kilometers (342 miles) and will travel at speeds up to 240 km-per-hour (150 mph). The car’s initial price tag will be between $200,000 and $300,000, but the company expects it to go down once the car hits the market.
“Our main emphasis, alongside safety, is reducing costs,” Kaplinsky said in hopes that the flying car would be readily available to a mass market.
NFT is located in the city of Netanya along Israel’s Mediterranean Coast and also maintains offices California. Test flights are scheduled to begin by next year.