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Published 4 August 2009 California company shows designs of a flying motorcycle; the bike is able to pop out a pair of wings and take to the skies; estimated price tag: $80,000
In order to get airborne, the Switchblade pops out two "scissors" wings from a clamshell belly case which keeps them "protected from road grunge and rock dings." The rear-mounted ducted fan can then propel the machine into the air to cruise at an estimated 134 mph, though this is expected to worsen the fuel economy from 60 mpg on the road to 22 mpg airborne. Samson recommend a 120 horsepower Freedom Motor low-emissions powerplant capable of burning a wide variety of fuels, but offer customers the option to fit any suitable engine of their choice.
The secret of Switchblade's superior performance superior, that is, relative to the Terrafugia) lies in the fact that despite being described as a "motorcycle" rather than a "car," it will weigh 1,400 lb all up. The four-wheeler Terrafugia Transition, by contrast, is intended to fit within the FAA 1 320 lb weight limit for light sport aircraft, and it uses a less powerful engine too. Page notes that a light-sport pilot's license is easier to achieve and keep up than a normal private-pilot ticket, which will presumably be required for Switchblade users. Experienced pilots would notice another probable downside for the Switchblade: its 70 knot stalling speed, which is a lot higher than the Transition's 45 kt. Samson does not specify the sky bike's takeoff run, but it will probably need significantly more than the Transition's 1,700 feet to get over a 50 foot obstacle.
Originally posted by grapesofraft
reply to post by KSPigpen
That is so freaking cool.. I want one. I am willing to throw myself on the ground and throw a tantrum until the govenment concedes to buy me one.
STANDARD FEATURES = Driver adjustable seat, continuously variable transmission (cvt) with forward, neutral, reverse, and flight mode, leather interior, lexan front windshield and side windows, heating & air conditioning, stereo cd, California ULEV rating, seat belt / safety harness, front and rear disc brakes, video rear view monitor, glass cockpit, automatic vehicle leaning in turns, extendable wings, dual ground/air lighting system, lightning protection, redundant ignition system, redundant battery system, Navigation radio, ELT (emergency location transmitter), back-up air speed, altimeter and attitude, ballistic chute recovery system.