Larry Page claims to be a step closer to making flying cars a reality after his Kitty Hawk company revealed the Cora, a two-person plane-pod hybrid with 12 rotors enabling it to take-off vertically like a drone.
After using a company called Zephyr Airworks to hide the Cora testing, Kitty Hawk was brought out of the shadows to reveal that it will start an approvals process to launch the aircraft in New Zealand.
The idea behind the Cora is to create an autonomous air taxi service using an electric powered craft, that could see parking paces swapped for landing pads.
"After almost eight years of engineering, re-engineering and re-re-engineering, we had done it. We had designed an air taxi, affectionately named Cora, that could take off like a helicopter and transition to flying like a plane. The possibilities were limitless," Kitty Hawk's website revealed.
It continued: "New Zealand's Central Aviation Authority has the respect of the worldwide regulatory community. A people who embrace the future. And a dynamic economy that could serve as a springboard for Cora," Kitty Hawk explained.
It also offers a large expanse of open space and rather small population - especially on South Island - that reduces the likelihood of human death and property damage if the company lost control of Cora during testing.
And the New Zealand government appears happy to have something interesting to talk about, too.
"In New Zealand, we know we can't keep using the same old approaches to meet our future challenges. We saw Cora's potential as a sustainable, efficient and transformative technology that can enrich people's lives, not only in New Zealand, but ultimately the whole world," said Dr Peter Crabtree of New Zealand's Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment.
All this sounds promising for the future of flying cars and taxis. But while Kitty Hawk appears to be getting off the ground, we reckon it'll have quite the task on its hands if it wants to persuade people to put their lives in the hands of what is essentially an oversize drone.
Still, most commercial aeroplanes are pretty much in the hands of autopilot systems. And if the excrement really hits the rotary blades, then the Cora has a built-in parachute to make its sky fall less of a death plummet.
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