The idea of a flying car is becoming a reality, thanks to Alef Aeronautics. The business announced on Tuesday that its flying car, the “Model A,” has received legal authorization from the US government to fly. Soon, flying cars will grace American skies.
The US Federal Aviation Administration granted a “Special Airworthiness Certification” to Alef’s Model A, the first automobile cum flying car of its kind. CEO Jim Dukhovny made the following remarks on the success:
“We’re excited to receive this certification from the FAA. It allows us to move closer to bringing people an environmentally friendly and faster commute, saving individuals and companies hours each week. This is one small step for planes, one giant step for cars.”
First flying car prototype
To meet certain requirements, including driving realistically, having vertical takeoff capabilities, and being reasonably priced, the business created its first subscale prototype in 2016.
Tim Draper, a well-known venture capitalist, and early Tesla investor, was shown the scaled model of Alef’s unique electric propulsion system before he became the company’s pioneering investor.
The initiative received a $3 million startup investment from Draper Associates Fund V. Alef unveiled the “Model A” in October of last year as the first electric flying vehicle capable of vertical takeoff and landing (eVTOL) and real-world street driving.
Alef claims that the Model A has a driving range of 200 miles and a flying range of 110 miles. Pre-sales for $300,000 started in October of last year, and Alef reports that before the end of the year, it had gathered over 440 reservations (with a $150 ordinary queue or $1,500 priority queue deposit).
Production of the Model A is anticipated to start in the fourth quarter of 2025, and deliveries will follow soon after.
Other manufacturers and startups, like XPeng, are also working to market “flying cars” or eVTOLs. In China earlier this year, the Aero HT from the EV startup was the first crewed eVTOL to be granted flight authorization.
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