Holy Heli-Bike! Flying Bicycle Lifts Off

Czech companies fly prototype of helicopter bicycle

Flying cars are so Space Age. Our priorities have changed over the years—Hello, bike shares!—and now, apparently our fantasies have, too.  Flying bikes are in.

No, not the alien-powered kind. We’re talking heli-bikes, or at least one heli-bike, designed by a team of three Czech companies—Technodat, Evektor and Duratec—just because.

“Our main motivation in working on the project was neither profit nor commercial interest, but the fulfillment of our boyish dreams,” one of the designers, Ales Kobylik, told the Czech news site Ceskenoviny.cz.

The prototype, which looks like something your nephew made with his Huffy and some fans, made a five-minute test flight for reporters in a Prague exhibition hall this Wednesday, reports the AP. Riding saddle on the 209-pound, remote-controlled contraption was a dummy in a motorcycle helmet—we wouldn’t want him to get hurt now.

Why exactly a bicycle is the vehicle of choice isn’t explained by news reports. I, for one, see no particular utility in a pedal-powered helicopter ride, and the inventors seem to agree, placing the burden on six electric-powered propellers. (I suppose not falling out of the sky could be a pretty powerful motivation for finishing that endurance ride, though.)

It cost on “the order of hundreds of thousands of crowns” to build, according to the Czech news site. One-hundred thousand Czech crowns is about $5,200, so it’s more reasonable than this Aston Martin cycle. Or at least will be once it’s powerful enough to carry a real person, which could happen by autumn, said engineer Milan Duchek.

Until then, we’ll just have to tide ourselves over with this video:

Via Discovery News.

Image credit: ČTK / Zbyněk Stanislav

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