Airbus Says Flying Car Will Be Tested by End of Year

But first it has to figure out how to keep it from crashing into things
By Michael Harthorne,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 18, 2017 5:36 PM CST
Airbus says it's going to test a self-piloting flying car by the end of the year.   (AP Photo/Michel Euler)

(Newser) – The future is now! Or, at least, by the end of the year, according to the CEO of Airbus. Reuters reports Tom Enders announced Monday that the company plans to test a prototype self-piloting flying car by the end of the year. He says Airbus has the "technological wherewithal" to make it happen and that they are currently in the "experimentation phase." Enders says the vehicle could be used like a ride-sharing app, help people avoid traffic, and save municipalities money on roads.

Sounds pretty cool, but a number of naysayers are putting the brakes on our flying car fantasies. Slate points out Airbus admittedly hasn't figured out "sense-and-avoid technology"—or, in other words, how to keep its flying cars from smashing into stuff. And Jalopnik notes that current designs look less "flying car" and more "flying helicopter," which is slightly less exciting. Also, the whole flying car thing still needs FAA approval to become a reality, and that's probably not going to happen any time soon. (Read more flying car stories.)

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