Hyundai is doubling down on their plans for flying cars.
The South Korean automaker is reportedly accelerating development of flying cars. They plan to have a full line-up of aerial vehicles available to consumers within a decade.
Hyundai is developing flying car models that will carry five or six people within metropolitan areas. There’s also a bigger version to fly between cities. The company expects to have flying cars on the market by 2028.
Unfazed by regulatory and safety hurdles, a slew of airplane makers, automakers, and start-up companies are seeking to disrupt the transportation industry with flying cars and parcel-hauling drones. Investment bank Morgan Stanley predicts such technology could lead to a $2.9 trillion industry by 2040.
Hyundai showcased its flying-car concept, developed with Uber Technologies, at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas early this year. The company envisions using pilots from service providers like Uber initially, before they become autonomous around 2035.
A Brave New (Flying) World
In the coming years, the industry itself (and regulators) need to tackle logistics questions. For example, what kind of a pilot license is required to operate a flying car? How will they eliminate or minimize the probability of accidents? New rules and infrastructure will also be required to ensure the vehicles do not interfere with plane and helicopter traffic.
Some flying cars may debut as early as 2023. However, Hyundai is really targeting 2028, when more infrastructure will be built and public awareness will be higher. To attract early customers, Hyundai is trying to reduce the vehicles’ cost and noise level, while keeping safety as a key focus.
Besides people carriers, Hyundai is working on a variant of flying cars that can be used for hauling goods. They have a capacity of as much as 660 pounds. Airbus, Boeing, and start-ups like Lilium are among the competition in the emerging flying car space.