A dual-mode car-aircraft vehicle has progressed closer to production by completing a flight between two international airports – in Nitra and Bratislava, Slovakia. AirCar made the 35-minute flight on 28 June 2021.
Klein Vision’s patent-protected AirCar completed its 142nd successful landing in Bratislava at 6:05am. After landing, at a click of a button the aircraft transformed into a sports car in under three minutes and was driven by its inventor, Professor Stefan Klein, and co-founder, Anton Zajac, to downtown Bratislava.
“Professor Stefan Klein is the world leader in the development of user-friendly flying cars,” said Dr Branko Sarh, Boeing senior technical fellow. “The automated transition from road vehicle into an air vehicle and vice versa, deploying/retracting wings and tail, is not only the result of pioneering enthusiasm, innovative spirit and courage; it is an outcome of excellent engineering and professional knowledge.”
The AirCar Prototype 1 is equipped with a 160hp BMW engine with fixed propeller and a ballistic parachute. Under the supervision of the Civil Aviation Authority, the AirCar has completed more than 40 hours of test flights, including steep 45° turns and stability and manoeuvrability testing. AirCar Prototype 1 has flown at 8,200ft (2,499m) and reached a maximum cruising speed of 190km/h (103kts).
Its makers say AirCar Prototype 2, the pre-production model, will be equipped with a 300hp engine and receive EASA CS-23 aircraft certification with an M1 road permit. With its variable pitch propeller, the Prototype 2 is expected to have a cruise speed of 300km/h (162kts) and range of 1,000km (621 miles).
“This flight starts a new era of dual transportation vehicles,” said Professor Klein. “It opens a new category of transportation and returns the freedom originally attributed to cars back to the individual.”
“AirCar is no longer just a proof of concept; flying at 8,200ft at a speed of 100kts, it has turned science fiction into a reality,” said Zajac.