Remember how we all thought that there would be flying cars in the future when we were kids? Well, society isn’t quite there yet much to our disappointment, but we might have hoverbikes sooner than later— at least in Abu Dhabi. This week, a futuristic flying bike was unveiled in the UAE capital during an event in Yas Bay, proving that the sky is literally the limit for the Gulf country. Dubbed the Xturismo Hoverbike, the new vehicle was developed by Bayanat, a unit of Abu Dhabi’s artificial intelligence company G42, in partnership with Japanese aerial mobility company Aerwins Technologies, to deliver life-saving support in emergency search and rescue operations.
The hoverbike, which has already been tested out in Japan, is made out of high-strength carbon fibre used in aviation and the space industry. Weighing at 300kg, it can fly at 80 kph for up to 40 minutes before it needs to refuel. Meanwhile four electrically-powered side fans control the vehicle during flying. The Wright brothers would be proud.
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Designed with rescue missions in mind, the introduction of the revolutionary flying bike comes amid a rise of aerial technology in the UAE, alongside high-tech drones being utilized by the police force to assist them in finding missing people, detecting traffic offenses, and help in drug cases.
Meanwhile, the Vice President of UAE, Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, approved the design for new air taxi stations in Dubai during World Government Summit, revealing that air taxis will begin operating in Dubai by 2026, making it the world’s first city to have a fully built network of vertiports—an infrastructure used for hosting electric vertical takeoff and landing aircraft.
Considering that we all use flying cars as an embodiment of a bright future, I think it’s safe to say that the UAE is well on its way to realizing that vision, with its ambitious plans for aerial transportation and cutting-edge technologies.