Many people fantasize about owning a
flying car. It’d be a lot of fun to soar above traffic and live out the dream that’s become a trope in so many science fiction movies.
This fantasy is now a reality because of all the new
car technology. It's an exciting thing to see, but it’s not a surprise that flying cars won’t come at an affordable price to everyone. Here’s a breakdown of what to expect for the costs of owning a flying car and whether it’s worth the price.
The history of flying cars
Building cars that could fly seemed like an obvious next step after the invention of the airplane. According to
Motor Trend, the first flying car was tested in 1917. It proved impossible to do at the time, but it didn't stop people from trying. Companies have been testing models such as the PAL-V ever since.
Finally, one model found success. On June 30,
Stefan Klein flew his AirCarfor 35 minutes in Slovakia. It can go 118 mph and fly as high as 8,200 feet. Other companies are still testing their models. All of them face similar hurdles, particularly related to costs. So what’s the price tag on a flying car?
How much does a flying car cost?
Pentagon Motor Groupfrom the U.K. gave a breakdown of how much money you’d be spending on a flying car.
They found that the car itself would cost around 495,421 pounds. This is based on their analysis of current flying cars, such as the PAL-V, Aska, Moller Skycar 400, and Terrafugia.
Before you start flying around with your new vehicle, you’ll need a license. This will likely be similar to getting a license to fly a helicopter and require lessons. A class and license will cost 26,830 pounds.
You’ll also need to insure your vehicle. Based on the insurance needs of aircraft that are the same size as the flying cars available, insurance should cost about 12,850 pounds.
Storing it could cost as much as 10,000 pounds. You’d have to build something like a helipad to park your vehicle. The yearly cost of fueling your flying car in the U.K. would be approximately 630.25 pounds.
According to Motor Trend, that means owning a flying car will cost more than $740,000 up-front. This is a rough estimate since American prices for licensing, insurance, storage, and fuel would be different from the ones listed. But the costs of ownership still won’t be cheap.
This also leaves out how much it would cost to maintain and repair. Early adopters would have a hard time finding parts or mechanics who knew how to work on the vehicle.
Are flying cars worth the money?
So, we’ve established that buying something like the AirCar is a big up-front investment.
Would it be worth it? Flying cars can travel fast, but not many of us need to go 118 mph to commute. These flying cars can't cross the ocean, so their use for long-distance travel is limited.
Most of us can travel conveniently for much less. You could buy over 70 first-class plane tickets for the amount you’d spend on a flying car. Anyone who can afford a flying car would probably already have a private jet.
The majority of us probably won't find flying cars cost-effective. Even just buying insurance on an AirCar is an extremely expensive transaction.
For now, most of us are still trying to save money on regular car insurance.
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