The automobile industry is one of the most complex and fascinating industries in the world. One of the more interesting facets of the industry is the sheer amount of innovation and technological advancement that we are currently seeing. Manufacturers are working on self-driving cars, electric cars and everything else in between. And just recently, one of the most desired and dreamt-of fantasies of the automotive industry could become a reality: the flying car.
Practically since the dawn of the automobile and the airplane, human beings have always wanted to mix the two as seamlessly as possible. Television, movies and other media have, for decades, depicted a world where human beings can take flight in their personal vehicles. And while we are still not at that stage, we are on the verge of a major breakthrough.
According to a report from Business Insider, Volocopter, a German-based startup, has struck a deal with the Dubai Road and Transport Authority (DRTA) to test out self-flying taxis for five years.
The flying taxis can fly for up to 17 minutes and can comfortably seat two passengers. The company has worked with the DRTA in order to create a set of predetermined routes for the tests. The tests will take place before the end of the year, meaning that the citizens of Dubai will be looking up to a sky full of flying taxis.
Although the taxis have the ability to sly themselves, they will be manned by a pilot for the entirety of the testing period. And while it is intriguing to think that the world will see a flying taxi service within the year, it also lends itself to many more questions.
Will this technology be implemented into personal vehicles as well? Will they be pilotable or will they exclusively function autonomously? What will guidelines and regulations look like for the vehicles? These are all questions that will hopefully be answered by the time flying vehicles make their way into the hands of eager consumers. But until then, the world will watch Dubai as it takes a tremendous leap towards the world of tomorrow.