There was for a time about half a century ago when science fiction writers and artists had envisioned the 21st century as a fantastical future. Certainly a far cry from our current woes in politics and the economy, people 50 years ago thought of the year 2000 the as this wondrous place where all this great technology existed and our world seemed to be a utopian wonderland with moving sidewalks and … flying cars.
The Moller SkyCar. The Terrafugia. The Alfa Romeo Spix flying concept car. All three of these winged machina have been dangled in our faces like a carrot at the end of an impossibly long stick. Jeff Allen Case is hoping he’ll be the first to deliver on the promise of flying cars with his Hammerhead prototype. He’s a few steps behind the Moller SkyCar and Terrafugia, having only a couple renderings of the Hammerhead and a spec sheet that exists on paper only. The Hammerhead has a three-fan configuration with two forward fans that tilt for both lift and thrust. Though we weren’t told what engine would power the Hammerhead, Case says he expects a top speed of 250 mph at 8,000 ft. with a range of 300 miles. It both takes off and lands vertically, and Case claims the vehicle is characterized by being lightweight, easy to operate, safe and fast. The renderings show a one-seater cockpit, but the production version would seat two in tandem. Of course, a production version is the next step that the Hammerhead won’t reach until Case finds some funding. He’s hoping Jay-Z or P. Diddy might be interested in supplying the Benjamins needed to put the Hammerhead in production, but we suggest he go for that second mortgage and enter his design in NASA’s Personal Air Vehicle Challenge. Perhaps he can catch the attention of some deep pockets at DARPA.
For $3-million on eBay, you could pick up a flying car prototype, which apparently is powered by four 280hp Mazda engines, a gyro system, and even includes a cockpit with touch panel interface.
This futuristic take on a flying car was designed by Hungarian design student Tibor for a design contest run by his native Porsche distributor. Inspired by the “bone of a cuttlefish,” the Audi Calamaro does a good job of looking kind of like its name suggests while still adapting current Audi design themes — check out the ‘beard’ air intake — to a product clearly intended for the distant future. We can spot no obvious means of propulsion, so can only assume it uses a Mr. Fusion.
Is everyone going mad or we’d better start getting out more? I mean, after earlier today we presented the diving car, here’s another crazy concept car. The Cell Craft G440 is a flying concept car, designed by Dr. Paul Moller and Gino d’Ignazio Gizio from Cell Craft. With this car sporting seven seats, I can only imagine the discussions: “So, when did you get your driving…uhm…flying license? – Well, two months ago. – Hmm, thanks, but I’ll walk!”