PAL-V Liberty will take its first flight at Farnborough
The first production model of a flying car -- the PAL-V Liberty -- will taking-off on its debut flight at the Farnborough International Air show this month (July 2018).
The vehicle will be capable of and fully certified for road travel and for flight. Liberty seats two passengers and has a top road speed of 100 mph and an economic cruising speed of 140kmh in flight mode – with the transition process between the two modes taking up to an hour.
The flying car will be on static display in Hall 4 at stand 4100 between the 21st and 22nd of July at the airshow. This is the first time that the car will be presented in the UK or, for that matter, at an air show.
Whilst a lot of attention is being paid to the VTOL market, the combined land-and-air vehicle projects are a smaller subset that is gaining traction. Airbus’s CityAirbus prototype is, perhaps, the best-known of these vehicles. However, none apart from the Liberty are in the production stage
Robert Dingemanse, CEO of PAL-V, said: "The production model is the moment of truth. The moment where the wall between fiction and fact is torn down. A production model is the last stage in the R&D process before starting full production and delivery. All certifications required for commercialization will be granted on the basis of this production model. It's the pivotal point that separates pioneers from dreamers."
The Dutch manufacturer is going through the last steps of its certification process for the Liberty – allowing it to travel both in the air and on the road. PAL-V is seeking certification from EASA and the US FAA and anyone operating the Liberty will require both a driver’s and a pilot’s licence.
PAL-V is also setting up flying experiences for the aircraft at flight schools to ensure people will be able to use it to its full potential at time for the Liberty’s delivery in 2020.
Mike Stekelenburg, PAL-V's Chief Engineer said: "It takes a lot of testing to prove that the PAL-V Liberty complies with the regulations. Our design philosophy of complying with existing road and air regulations saved us many years in time to market.
“Instead of opting for a flying-car concept on the basis of not-yet-existing or immature technologies, requiring new regulations, we deliberately chose to design, engineer and manufacture a flying car with proven technologies. This approach enables a realistic and imminent first product delivery date."