Already three years ago, Franky Zapata had impressed the whole world when he attempted to cross the English Channel in the air – on his homemade hoverboard/jetpack. The flying Frenchman also made the headlines earlier this year when he crashed his flyboard into a lake, but got away from it with no serious injuries.
Now, the French inventor has unveiled JetRacer, a new, high-speed personal vertical take-off and landing aircraft with no lifting surface. The JetRacer flying car is built on a light and modular chassis, allowing it to meet multiple needs, both civil and military, as well as being remotely controlled, the company says.
All critical systems are architected to provide an extremely high level of redundancy and safety – propulsion, control, power supply, etc. The aircraft is powered by 10 micro-turbo-jet engines, which can still fly in case it loses two of them.
The JetRacer is a single-seater that can fly to reach altitudes of 3,000 meters and attain lip-prying maximum speeds of 250 km/h (155 mph), making it much faster and more powerful than other personal eVTOL under development. It has a maximum carrying capacity of 200 kg. The flying car boasts of being able to withstand strong, turbulent winds than other category craft.
Zapata is working on two additional JetRacer prototypes for use in the U.S. trials of the flying car and is planning to market the craft to individuals, businesses, and security and military clients.
There is no information on any kind of production or sale schedule or pricing. Of course, the device may remain in the realm of the flight demo for some time. To extend the development of its JetRacer, Zapata is organizing a flight test campaign in the U.S. open to the general public. About a hundred people will be drawn to participate in the selection tests that will select the 25 participants for this unique experience.