A Japanese startup that aims to convince wealthy customers to trade their supercars for a hoverbike worth 77.7million yen ($680,000).
It went on sale Tuesday and even Japanese soccer player Keisuke honda backs the firm.
A.L.I. Technologies, a Tokyo-based drone startup, has released its “XTurismo Limited Edition.” which comes equipped with a conventional engine and four battery-powered motors. It promises to fly for up to 40 minutes at speeds of up to 100 km/h (62 mph).
During the interview with Reuters, C.E.O. Daisuke Kanato said, “Until now, there was no choice but to move on the ground and at a scale in the sky. “We hope that we can offer a new way of moving.”
The hoverbike, which will be available in two coloured options, red and black, has a motorbike-like body on top of propellers. When not in use, it rests on a stand similar to a helicopter’s landing skid.
The backing of big names such as Mitsubishi Electric and Kyocera demonstrated the bike by taking a quick flight just a few meters above the ground at a racetrack near Mount Fuji.
Katano stated that the bike’s use would be restricted to these areas in the short term. He also said that it would not be permitted to fly over Japan’s densely packed roads. However, he mentioned that the bike could be used as a rescue vehicle to reach remote areas.
Japan’s stringent regulations, based on safety concerns, have hindered growth in sectors like ride-sharing. Katano indicated that the bike could have more applications if necessary modifications were made to the rules.
From California’s Joby Aviation to Israel’s A.I.R., funding flows to startups who promise to usher into a new era in personal air transport from jetpacks and flying taxis.
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