Alphabet CEO Larry Page backed flying car company named Kitty Hawk has finally come out with its first vehicle and it may hit retail stores by the end of this year.
The company’s president, Sebastian Thrun, sent out a tweet today quoting a New York Times article and a link that shows the vehicle prototype in action.
The Kitty Hawk flying car, which comes with an electrical engine, looks a bit like a flying jetski and resembles a single-passenger aircraft straight out of a Star Wars movie. Currently, the vehicle that weighs 100kg and can travel at 25mph is at a prototype stage but will look different when it comes out.
“The prototype looks and feels a lot like a flying motorcycle,” a profile of the vehicle by the New York Times (NYT) reads. “You mount the seat and lean forward, just like you would on a bike.
“The controls are built into a set of handlebars and work similar to buttons and joysticks on a video game controller. It takes off and lands vertically, like a helicopter. But unlike a helicopter, the Flyer is 100% electric and powered by eight rotors.”
Watch the Kitty Hawk in action
According to the Kitty Hawk site, the new vehicle is “safe, tested and legal to operate in the US”, as long as it is flown in “uncongested areas.” Also, one doesn’t need a pilot’s license to fly it, and Kitty Hawk claims you can learn how to drive it in just a few hours.
Importantly, the vehicle is designed to fly over water only. The company hasn’t said how much a vehicle will cost, but is offering an early $2000 (£1560) discount for people who are willing to cough up $100 (£78) now. That early payment will get you both the discount and some test flights with the Kitty Hawk, NYT reported.