Flying Tricycle By 2009

By Evan Ackerman


The PAL-V is a hybrid tricycle and gyrocopter. On the road, it’s “as comfortable as a luxury car” while performing like a motorcycle. Notably, it adopts the tilting characteristics of the Carver One when it turns at speed. Find your way to an airstrip (or a long straight piece of road), and a tail pops out, rotors unfold, and off you go, climbing up to 4,000 feet (the bottom ceiling of commercial airspace) at speeds of up to 200 kph. Landing is vertical, and as an autogyro, you can land safely without an engine. It’s got a fuel efficient powerplant that handles both driving and flying, and can run on regular gas, biodiesel, or bioethanol. With active investors, the PAL-V should be available in 2 years for an undisclosed price.

Now, I’m all for the flying car concept, but as a practicing pilot, I have to say that I’m a little leery of it in practice. There are a bunch of very good reasons why getting a pilot’s license is a lot harder than getting a driver’s license, and despite the inherently stable characteristics of an autogyro, takeoff, landing, and navigation is always tricky. And unlike regular cars, which drive on roads, with a flying car, nobody is safe anywhere. Let’s hope these things get regulated effectively, or I’m building myself an underground nuke/tornado/flying tricycle shelter.

[ PAL-V ] VIA [ Coolest Gadgets ]

11 thoughts on “Flying Tricycle By 2009”

  1. Great, now not just birds we will have to avoid litter falling on our heads by some bling bling pimp my helicycle teens with their radio blaring bollywood rap

  2. Every day people should NOT fly. That said if these were automated flight but could be driven by people then I’m cool with it. Though I’d much rather people couldn’t drive too.

  3. If the price less than $60,000 at first then production costs are under $30,000 after 5 years. I wonder what happen when the price is under $30,000 then start getting possibly getting some idoits off the highway into the air. Just keep my sunroof open incase so to drive away if the person gonna crash into my car lol.

  4. I wouldn’t mind having one of these but:
    Autogyros have their own inflight stability problems* and using skills learned on fixed wing aircraft or helicopters is a good way to get killed.
    *it is possible to flip over top of the rotor, for instance if you unload the blades.
    this can be done by accident while trying to recover (reflex) from a stall.

  5. Cool conept, but the world is not ready for this. YOu don’t even see flying cars in Star Trek which takes place in 2300 + . So to hell with this, it should only be avialable to certified pilots trained in gyrocopters.

  6. While I agree that darwinization will occur when those who refuse to operate any machinery do so anyway, this is a fact of life that will happen no matter the regulations or self centered snobishness disguised as concern for fellow man. If I can get one of these, I will have the forethought to learn how to not die in the air. I might however consider dropping nasty little parcels at high speed, altitude, and frequency, depending both on the mood of myself and my target, hence the name. hehehehehe. Ain’t I a stinka. If someone says I can’t fly this because I haven’t paid a ridiculous amount of money, then pooh on them.

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