LIFE IS SHORT, and in some strange, morbid way, this knowledge of our mortality is what compels us to push forward, work harder and dream bigger. It is what drives us to invent new vaccines, plant-based meat and the dreamiest of science-fiction dreams – the flying car.
Making this dream a reality is Matt Pearson, the founder of Airspeeder, the world’s first flying electric car racing series that’s now in partnership with Swiss watchmaker IWC Schaffhausen; they both share the same love of engineering, aviation and motorsport, and the vision to fast-track a new era of clean-air mobility. The series, which is reminiscent of pod racing in Star Wars, should take place later this year at three locations across the globe. They will all be controlled remotely, and if all goes to plan, a human-piloted series will be scheduled for 2022.
Call his bluff, but in June, the Airspeeder Mk3 (built by Alauda, which was also founded by Pearson) completed its first flight in Australia. Inspired by the racing car of the 1950s, it combines Formula One car dynamics with the profile of a fighter jet and prowess of a helicopter. Built around a carbon-fibre tub and featuring a rotor blade on each of its corners, it can zip from zero to 100km/ hr in 2.8 seconds and fly as high as 500m. It may not be outer space, but you will still feel like you’re at the pinnacle of a new world.
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