Flying cars could soon become a reality

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Kitty Hawk wants to get Flyer out to customers soon and it is apparently taking pre-orders, without announcing the prices publicly.

Kitty Hawk published a 37-second video unveiling the updated Flyer and allowed the CNN reporter Rachel Crane to become the first journalist to pilot the vehicle.

Test flights by first-timers were over water, with the top speed limited to 32 kilometers per hour (20 mph) and the altitude to no more than three meters.

Kitty Hawk, the Mountain View, California-based flying auto company founded and backed by Google's Larry Page is offering a new glimpse of one its upcoming aircraft: a single-person recreational vehicle.

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Image: No price has been specified for the flying auto. In the USA, the Flyer falls under the FAA's rules for ultralight aircraft, meaning no pilot's license is needed so long as it's flown over water or "uncongested areas". Startup Kitty Hawk is ready to make that dream a reality with the Flyer, a new all-electric ultralight plane.

The company is now accepting applications - by invitation only - for a test flight model, the Straits Times reported.

The current version can fly up to 20 miles per hour and 10 feet in the air.

The electric aircraft had 10 small lift rotors on its wings, making it capable of vertical take-off and landing like a helicopter.

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Several other flying auto models are also being tested, with Uber and other companies expressing interest, according to the report.

Kitty Hawk said that at 15 meters (50 feet) away, it sounded about as lound as a lawn mower, while from 250 feet away the volume was on par with a loud conversation.

While Kitty Hawk is developing single-seat and two-seat aircraft, other companies are looking at vehicles that seat from four to six, imagining this new form of transportation as akin to a flying taxi cab.

More details are available at the flyer.aero website.

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