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Slovakian flying car officially cleared for takeoff

Country’s transport authority issues certificate of airworthiness for Aircar that can fly at 170 km/h and travel 1,000 kilometers — though it needs a 300-meter runway to take off

Screen capture from video of the AirCar in fligth
Screen capture from video of the AirCar in fligth

BRATISLAVA, Slovakia — Slovakia’s Transport Authority on Tuesday said it had issued a certificate of airworthiness for flying car model AirCar, a first step towards commercial production of the invention.

“AirCar certification opens the door for mass production of very efficient flying cars,” said Stefan Klein, founder and chief executive of KleinVision, a company that designed and manufactured the prototype of the dual-mode car-aircraft vehicle.

“It is an official and final confirmation of our ability to change mid-distance travel forever,” Klein said in a press release.

AirCar completed its first intercity flight in June 2021.

The vehicle is powered by a 1.6-liter BMW engine and needs a runway only 300 meters long to take off.

It has a flight speed of up to 170 kilometers per hour (105 mph) and a flying distance of 1,000 kilometers.

The process of transforming from car to plane takes less than three minutes.

Everything is automated, so a single button command is all it takes to change it.

Before certification, the Slovak flying car had to complete 70 hours of flight testing, with more than 200 takeoffs and landings, KleinVision said.

“Based on the fact that the aircraft met the conditions of national regulations set for individually manufactured aircraft and the required level of safety was demonstrated, the Slovak Transport Authority (STA) has issued a special certificate of airworthiness,” STA director Rene Molnar told AFP.

According to Molnar, after STA has issued the certification, AirCar can apply for aircraft-type certification.

“After obtaining the type certificate, it can manufacture the aircraft commercially,” he added.

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