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SkyRunner Car Goes Off-Road and Off-Ground 26

Zothecula writes "Back in 2008, we heard about a parasail-equipped dune buggy, known as the Parajet Skycar. It could scramble over rough ground like a true off-roader, but then take to the skies when needed. One epic 6,000-km (3,728-mile) drive/flight from London to Tombouctou later, its creators got some ideas about how the design could be improved. The result is the lighter, better-flying and less-polluting SkyRunner – and you can order one now." Fans of American domestic parasail-equipped flying cars, don't forget that there's also the Florida-built Maverick.
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SkyRunner Car Goes Off-Road and Off-Ground

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  • If it goes off-road and off-ground, it's starting to sound like that jetpack I was promised back in the 50s.

    • by Greyfox ( 87712 )
      It's a parasail-equipped car. I'm guessing once you bust the parasail out you have to pack it away again after. I'm also guessing that the FAA will consider that to be an ultralight and require you to take off from an airport (Which is really what defeats most of the best reasons to have a flying car in the USA anyway.)
      • by Tom ( 822 )

        Not sure about the US, but I've had the pleasure of starting from the private/business departure area on my local airport, and it doesn't compare with the regular airport, it's an entirely different world. No security theatre, no waiting and sitting around, you arrive, go through the lobby, on the tarmac, into the plane, take-off. Total time spent on airport: 10 minutes at most.

        Being able to skip the lines and security theatre and waiting and boarding is easily worth it all by itself.

        • by Greyfox ( 87712 )
          Oh yeah, you can just walk on to the local airport here, but it kind of defeats the purpose of having a "flying car" if you have to take off and land there. You still need to use the road system to get anywhere in town. During the epic flooding here a couple months ago, traffic in town was gridlocked. Every road going north and east had washed out and a couple hundred thousand people were trying to go north or east. Consequently you couldn't even go south or west because you had to go a little north or a li
          • by Tom ( 822 )

            I don't think the point of the flying car is at your home location.

            The point is that once you arrive, you have a car.

            • by Greyfox ( 87712 )
              Yeah, most people when they imagine it though, they imagine flying to work. Problem is, if you're flying to work, so is everyone else. Maybe at some point Google will make an autonomous flying car that can handle that sort of traffic and is actually safe enough for someone who's not a pilot to use. They'd still need to get the FAA to change their regulations, which I suspect is a harder task than making an autonomous flying car that everyone can use. Rumor has it they got the FAA to change their regs for th
      • by Anonymous Coward

        Bollocks. You aren't required to take off from or land at an airport in an ultralight, a light sport aircraft, or a normal airplane or helicopter. And this thing is way to heavy to be an ultraLIGHT anyway.

      • by Thumper_SVX ( 239525 ) on Sunday November 03, 2013 @01:19PM (#45318385) Homepage

        I'm not quite sure where you're getting the impression that you need to take off and land from an airport in the USA. While I've never done it I have seen a helicopter land and take off from the parking lot of a business here in St. Louis on more than one occasion. With an appropriately equipped plane you can also take off and land in fields without anyone batting an eyelid... so long as you have the permission of the land owner or own the land yourself.

        Can you cite a FAR that shows that you can't fly from anywhere but an airport?

  • by msauve ( 701917 ) on Saturday November 02, 2013 @06:59PM (#45314357)
    It doesn't go on road. This thing is obviously not capable of meeting the requirements for a vehicle to be driven on public roads.
    • The unprotected propeller being the most obvious reason. And the sheer chaos induced if you tried to take off or land in traffic.

  • I like the idea behind projects like The Maverick.

    The flying car that has a clearly defined and realistic purpose, in the case of the Maverick, delivering routine medical care to areas which are tucked behind a gorge or some other natural obstruction, but where the expense of a fixed wing aircraft or helicopter would be hard to justify.

  • Low-profile tires are awesome on the road, but this thing is designed to function off of it. The ideal tire for something as light as this would not only be narrower, but also have a taller sidewall. Well, or it would be a tweel, but it would still have a taller side.

    • Sometimes style trumps function for purely practical (monetary, as in financial backing) reasons.

      Once upon a time, there was a project to build and drive a Miata 200mph on the Bonneville salt flats. From a pure engineering / efficient speed perspective, you'd want narrow wheels/tires for that (no reason to turn on the salt flats). However, when you're looking for funding for a project like that, one of the prime candidates are custom wheel manufacturers - and custom wheels are wide and oversized (for low

  • The Slipstream is coming! [] And by landmark I mean toppled over mile marker...
  • by DaveAtFraud ( 460127 ) on Saturday November 02, 2013 @10:26PM (#45315413) Homepage Journal

    The October issue of Air & Space Magazine had an interesting article on an earlier attempt [] to get John Q.Public flying instead of driving. Hint: the problem isn't the cost of the vehicle.


  • It's a paraglider and not a parasail. Parasail is something you drag behind a boat or car to lift a passanger to air, but the passanger can't steer and the parasail can't function without the rope. Paraglider on the other hand is used to fly for long distances similar to hang gliders and sailplanes.

  • 20-inch rims and low profile street tires. Perfect for off-roading.

  • So what? My car can go off-road and off-ground.

    Just not for very long. Or more than once.

What this country needs is a good five cent ANYTHING!