- Rey' speederbike, an example of hovercraft in the eight episode of Star Wars (Wookiepedia).

The Flying Cars : three concepts and a conclusion.

Talking about the flying cars deals with many motoring meanings. The NASA analyzes the definition of the flying cars. Of course, some movies offer representations about that hybrid vehicles. In the previous article, I wrote on points presenting some models from America and Europe which built the history of the flying cars. Through some examples, I tried to understand why people wanted to invent that kind of transport. So how to define the flying cars through three concepts :

1- A Personal air vehicle (PAV).

A Flying Flivver replica considered as the "Ford T of the air" (Wikipedia).

In 2003, a project called Aeoronautics Vehicles System program was developped by the NASA. What was the idea under that large project? Defining the main elements of the flying cars in our modern society, I'm sure SpaceX, Elon Musk' entreprise, was interested in the old concept. Previously, Henry Ford predicted the conception of flying car in 1940 saying some words :

"Mark my word : a combination airplane and motorcar is coming. You May Smile but it will come."

Henry Ford

Ford's plane, the Flying Shivver, was far away to complete the standards chosen by the engineers of the NASA. It was a simple aircraft but the inventor of the amazing Tin Lizzie has some original ideas. What are the main elements to build a viable flying car? It would be a quiet and confortable vehicle which is driven/flown at speed of 150/200 mph (or 240/320 km/h). You wouldn't need to have a pilot license but just a driving license without forgetting the affordable prices of the flying cars. We can imagine a flying sportive utilitarian vehicles for your family or a supercar imagining a Renault Espace or a flying Porsche 911.

2- An intermodal passenger transport.

The eighth episode of Star Wars is released on 13th december 2017. George Lucas created an universe around a wealth and original history 40 years ago. The future of the transportation is well represented by the hovercrafts and space ships. Later, Back to the future showed the hovercrafts in details when Marty comes in the future in the second opus.

I mentioned the hovercrafts and not the roadable aircrafts. What is the hovercraft? We can define it as a personnal vehicle which flies at a constant altitude above the ground. In other words, it would be define like a flying car. What is the difference with a roadable aircraft? It is a flying car who can be driven on the roads and a plane with wheels which flies on the atmosphere. Once I asked to James May what where his feelings when he was inside one of the flying car built by Taylor. He had answered me simply as you can see it below.

So what do James think about the hovercrafts?

Finally, the flying hovercraft doesn't need wheels to fly freely in the air. We can divide the hovercrafts is two categories. The maritime hovercrafts flew on the water and can be driven on the roads whereas the flying hovercrafts are imaginative hybrid vehicles in the retrofuturism, a social artwork about the future of the transportation.

3-An environmental and engineering hybrid vehicle.

More than a Convair 116, a flying car includes complex environmental and aeronautical regulations (Wikipedia).

Defining a flying car means to know the environmental regulations and aeronautic rules around the concepts of the cars and the planes. We enter into a new electric motoring era after a long and interesting development of the diesel engines. The environmental regulations are becoming more important with some initiatives in the big cities. The T-charge (around £10) will be add to the Congestion charges in London. The old cars aged of 20 years will be banned in Paris too.

The flying cars would be able to respect these environmental rules on the roads.

The flying cars would be able to respect these environmental rules on the roads. After pointing out the terrestrial pollution, we have to think of the atmospheric pollution as the naval engineers have done in the shipping. The atmospheric busy corridors became a real problem in the transport. You have to fly on invisible roads in the air too. How to manage to introduce the flying cars in the air which the pollution is increased by the traffic jam?

Creating new rules for personal air vehicles would be a solution. There are some advantages and inconveniences. Increasing the numbers of safety rules is a concret goal but a long issue. The Federation Internationale automobile (FIA) tries to improve the motoring safety on the roads. The results of the new regulation to drive safely are a long process. Moreover, the aeronautical rules are so complex too. Finding a harmonious compromise stays the best solution.

Some drivetribers told me it's important the engines of the flying cars have to be powerful keeping a certain stability for the passengers. Indeed, landing on the roads is not easy for planes. They need a certain distance without mentioning the noises of the engines in an urban environment. Finally, the flying cars would be a vertical takeoff and landing vehicle called briefly a VTOL.


What is a flying car? Is it a pointless car as said me James May one day? Is it a real concept as we saw it with the Taylor aerocar or the new aeromobil 3.0? Is it an old concept imagined by a former engineer from Ford in 1917? Defining a large and theorithical concept is hard because you can develop different ideas about the flying cars. Would you want to have a roadable aircraft or a hovercrafts with wheel or not? Anyway, a flying car is a personal air vehicle, an intermodal passenger transport and an environmental and engineering hybrid vehicle.

Whether you're a lego player, imagine new models of flying cars. Post your pictures on #the-transportation-world or in the comments below. Tell me how you imagine your flying cars.

#flyingcars, #JamesMay, #ElonMusk, #HenryFord, #roadableaircraft, #hovercrafts, #starwars, #retrofuturism, #hybridvehicle, #environment.

If you missed the previous articles on the Flying cars' series :