Flying cars and vehicles have been imagined by futurists for decades, and have consistently been dismissed as fiction by those against the idea.
However, you can place an order for a working one today and receive it in three years.
The Aero-X bike, designed and built by Aerofex, can carry two people 10ft above the surface at speeds of up to 45mph. Although from Aerofex’s experience the most comfortable riding height is five feet above the ground.
The company says the pilots reference with the ground is very similar to riding a motorbike, so complex flying instruments are not necessary; it can also be flown over any surface.
We spoke to the company’s founder Mark De Roche to find out more about the potential for the bike.
The bike can be used over private land and water and wherever off-highway vehicles are allowed. This is because surface effect vehicles and hovercraft are classified as off-highway vehicles and boats and in the US.
Roche said that there has been a huge amount of interest in the bike and its potential uses. This includes from the government.
“We are currently working on a robotic version for agriculture – specifically aerial application,” he said.
“We are also in talks with the US Government about creating some derivative vehicles for their applications.”
The man behind the company says the technology used to create the bike is not intended to be used on the roads but for private use to help those who may need it the most.
Roche, who leads the company and is an aerospace engineer, said the technology could be used for larger transport vehicles.
He said: “We’ve designed the Aero-X as an aerial utility vehicle to be used by farmers, ranchers, and park and border patrol. It may also have industrial uses such as pipeline inspection and bridge maintenance.
“We also think it would be ideal for search and rescue as well as disaster relief. The technology itself is scalable to larger vehicles that could be used for transport, but that is beyond our current thinking.”
He also added that the company does not see the bike, which has an $85,000 price tag, being used on the roads, or by everyone.
“We do not envision the Aero-X as a means of transport or commuter vehicle,” he added.
“In fact, initial vehicles will not be categorized as off-road vehicles and will not be allowed to operate over roads.
All images courtesy of Aerofex.