Pal-V is finally ready to let customers take off in the company’s flying cars because the firm is now taking orders for its Liberty Pioneer and Liberty Sport. However, the first deliveries don’t begin until 2018.
On the road, the Liberty operates as a trike. The suspension also hunkers down compared to when in flight, and the vehicle even leans into corners. Its 100-horsepower (75-kilowatts) engine allows for acceleration to 62 miles per hour (100 kilometers per hour) in around nine seconds, according to the company.
When drivers want to go skyward, the rotor unfurls in three to five minutes. Before takeoff, a person just needs to manually unfold the rotor blades and propeller.
There’s no worry about wings because the Liberty is an autogyro. This means that the rotor doesn’t get power. Instead the propulsion from the propeller at the rear causes the blades on top to spin and create lift. Like a plane, it still requires a runway for takeoff and landing.
Pal-V estimates the Liberty can fly 248 miles (399 kilometers) at its takeoff max weight and allowing for half an hour of reserve fuel upon landing. With a single person inside, the range grows to 310 miles (499 km). Its max velocity is 112 mph (180 kph) but cruising speed is between 87 and 100 mph (140 to 161 kph).
The Liberty doesn’t quite solve the dream of getting stuck in traffic and then taking flight, but it does give pilots a single solution for getting around. They can drive to the airport, fly to their destination, and then switch the vehicle back into a car for the final distance.
Pal-V is launching with 90 examples of the Liberty Pioneer Edition that sell for $599,000 or 499,000 euros. These come fully loaded with generally optional features like dual controls and an electronic instrument display. The Liberty Sport without these features arrives later for $399,000 or 299,000 euros. Regardless of the model, buyers get flight instruction in how to operate the vehicle.
The flying car continues to be the dream of many engineers, and companies like AeroMobil and Terrafugia are still trying to make the idea work. Even Toyota has received multiple patents for figuring out how to combine an automobile and an airplane.
Gallery: Pal-V Liberty Flying Car
The First Flying Car Company to Start Selling its Commercial Models
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PAL-V International B.V. Feb 13, 2017, 00:00 ET
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RAAMSDONKSVEER, The Netherlands, February 13, 2017 /PRNewswire/ --
This week, flying car manufacturer PAL-V has officially started the sales of its commercial models, the Liberty Pioneer and Liberty Sport. The first commercial flying car in the world is now a fact. Images of the PAL-V Liberty are now available on the PAL-V website (http://www.PAL-V.com).
The first flying car company to start selling its commercial models. Following the successful test programs of their concept vehicles in 2009 and 2012, PAL-V started the design of the commercial products. PAL-V deliberately chose to engineer, design and build a flying car with proven technologies and fully compliant with existing regulations.Flying car manufacturer PAL-V has officially started the sales of its commercial models, the Liberty Pioneer and Liberty Sport. The first commercial flying...
(Photo: http://mma.prnewswire.com/media/465729/PAL_V_Liberty.jpg )
"After years of hard work, beating the technical and qualification challenges, our team succeeded in creating an innovative flying car that complies with existing safety standards, determined by regulatory bodies around the world," says Robert Dingemanse, CEO of PAL-V.
Following the successful test programs of their concept vehicles in 2009 and 2012, PAL-V started designing the commercial products that were launched today.
PAL-V is now nearing an exciting phase for its continued business growth, namely fulfilling the first client orders. While other flying car manufacturers' concepts require modified regulations and in many cases not yet existing technologies, PAL-V deliberately chose to engineer, design and build a flying car with proven technologies and fully compliant with existing regulations. This leads to a first product delivery date that is realistic and imminent.
The new model design has a distinct Italian flair, thanks to collaborations with leading Italian design agencies. It incorporates a unique dual engine propulsion that further increases the safety of the PAL-V Liberty. While driving, the lowered suspension and tilting "cockpit" adds to the sports car feel. A novel design approach serves to avoid a number of common pilot errors by design, making the PAL-V Liberty very safe and easy to operate.
"Later in 2017 we will start building a preproduction series followed by the manufacturing of the first PAL-V Liberty's for our early 'pioneer' clients. Deliveries of road and air certificated models are scheduled by the end of 2018. This truly is a pivotal time in aviation and mobility history," adds Dingemanse.
The PAL-V Liberty has a strong appeal in the North American markets where Mark Jennings-Bates, VP of Sales of NorthAmerica, has introduced the PAL-V model to selected clients in Canada, USA, Mexico and Bermuda.
"We are very pleased with the response so far. Now that the new design is public I expect to see an even greater interest stemming from NorthAmerica which has a propensity for early adoption in innovative products," says Jennings-Bates.
SOURCE PAL-V International B.V.