Lansing, Mich. (WLNS) — You might have been hearing about flying cars and personal aircrafts for decades, now finally, the sci-fi idea takes a step closer to becoming a reality.
Kris Van Cleave has the story.
The fantasy of the flying car may finally be getting off the ground. The Toyota-backed company, Skydrive, recently showed off a short, but successful test flight of the personal aircraft it’s developing.
Innovators around the globe are going to new heights to create personal aircraft in all shapes and sizes.
Tim Stevens is the Editor-in-Chief of CNET’s Roadshow who said many people are interested in these aircraft.
“We’re seeing a lot of companies investing in this because the expectation is that by 2040 this is gonna be a multi-trillion dollar industry.”
CNET Roadshow’s Tim Stevens said some are developing planes that double as a car, but increasingly prototypes take off vertically, no runway needed.
That includes Uber’s Elevate, basically ride-sharing for the sky.
“Uber wants to develop hubs that would exist in major cities where you could basically go there like a train station sort of thing, go up to the roof, hop in one of these things and then get out at the airport or maybe some station close to your home out in the suburbs,” Stevens said.
Initially, a pilot would be at the controls, but the plan is for the aircraft to eventually fly autonomously.
Airplane maker, Airbus, is also working on an air taxi.
We visited their test site in Oregon last year to see a flight…which only lasted a few minutes.
In 2019, CBS News’ Kris Van Cleave reported:
“One of the challenges will be developing better lighter batteries that let these things fly farther and longer. Their goal is launch a remotely controlled four-seat craft called city Airbus… but there’s a major hurdle….. establishing regulations to manage the airspace.”
“So a lot of questions need to be resolved before these things can really hit the air,” Stevens said.
Uber is moving ahead and hopes to have a piloted aircraft by 2023.
Skydrive is working to launch its personal vehicle that same year.