The future must be here, because people keep building flying cars. First, there was the Terrafugia Transition. Now, there's the Aeromobil, which hails from Slovakia.
According to Gizmag (via Autoblog), the Aeromobil has been under development for over two decades. Company co-founder and head designer Štefan Klein started with the Aeromobil 1.0 in 1990. He's currently on version 2.5, which made its first test flight this week. As with software, Klein hopes to incrementally improve his creation. Aeromobil 2.5 is just a prototype for the 3.0 production version.
In its current form, the Aeromobil consists of a steel chassis and carbon fiber body, weighing approximately 992 pounds empty. It's powered by the same Rotax 912 engine as the Transition. Like the Transition, the Aeromobil is also more plane than car.
In driving mode, the wings sweep back behind the cabin. They fit snugly along a boom that houses the shaft for the rear-mounted propeller, and locates the tail and rear wheels.
Klein says the "car" will fit in standard parking spaces, and will run on pump gas. The Transition's Rotax 912 require 91-octane fuel, so buyers of the Aeromobil may have to splurge for premium as well.
When it's time to fly, the wings unfold to their full, 27-foot span. The driver then shifts power from the rear wheels to the propeller.
The Aeromobil's top speed is reportedly 124 mph in the air, and a little over 100 mph on the ground. it has a cruising range of 430 miles while airborne, or 310 miles while earthbound.
Aeromobil hasn't announced any plans to sell its flying car in the United States, but could probably take advantage of the same Light Sport Aircraft regulations as Terrafugia if it did. These rules essentially create an entry-level pilot's license better suited to recreational fliers.