Is your regular four-wheeled driving experience getting you down? Wondering when our Back to the Future/Jetsons style transportation future will arrive?
Today, startup Kitty Hawk — named as a nod to the work of aeronautical pioneers Orville and Wilbur Wright — released a video of its first product, an entirely electric aircraft called the Kitty Hawk Flyer.
The company’s CEO is Sebastian Thrun, who founded Google X, which was responsible for innovations such as Google Glass, balloon internet connectivity initiative Project Loon and self-driving cars.
Google co-founder Larry Page is an investor in the company, and in a statement to The New York Times said, “We’ve all had dreams of flying effortlessly. I’m excited that one day very soon I’ll be able to climb onto my Kitty Hawk Flyer for a quick and easy personal flight.”
The company describes the vehicle as “safe, tested and legal to operate in the United States in uncongested areas under the Ultralight category of FAA regulations. We’ve designed our first version specifically to fly over water. You don’t need a pilot’s license and you’ll learn to fly it in minutes.”
No word just yet on how much the vehicle will cost when it goes on sale at the end of the year, but it’s probably not going to be cheap.
Potential customers currently have the option to plunk down $100 for a three-year membership that gets them access to events where they will get to see flight demonstrations and a chance to take one for a spin before it hits the market. That, and a place on the waitlist and a $2,000 discount off of the retail price.
In other flying car news, Uber will host a three-day conference in Dallas starting Tuesday focused on “on-demand, urban air transportation.”