Forget TSA pat-downs: Drive a flying car!
Missionary's son invents 'Maverick' to boldly go
where no auto has gone before
Steve Saint says the Maverick – which can do 0-60 mph
in 3.9 seconds on the ground, is certified by the
Federal Aviation Association for flights up to 10,000
feet in altitude and can even be equipped with pontoons
to traverse water – can be used for border patrol,
search-and-rescue operations or even flying to dodge the
traffic on your way "to Wal-Mart."
But the primary purpose, he says, "is in places where
there are no doctors, there are no nurses, there's no
hospital." His eventual plan is to sell the Maverick in
the commercial market in order to, in turn, make it
affordable for humanitarian and missions operations.
Saint drove the Maverick from Dunnellon, Fla., to
Oshkosh, Wis. – a trip of roughly 1,400 miles – to
demonstrate the practical use of the car not just in the
air, but also on the highway.
Video of his journey can be seen below:
Saint drove to Oshkosh to participate
in the Experimental Aircraft Association's annual
AirVenture, where hundreds of thousands of aviation
enthusiasts gather each summer in the nation's largest
private air show.
There he explained to the curious
that the Maverick stores its parachute-like wing folded
atop the cab and the mast that connects the car to wing
underneath the Maverick's carriage. When assembled, all
the pilot needs to do is accelerate to 40 mph, and the
Maverick lifts off. The controls in air are simply the
same steering wheel and foot pedals used on the ground.
"Anybody who can drive an automatic
transmission car can fly it," Saint says.
The Maverick is fueled by a 170-hp
Subaru engine that gets about 25 mpg on the highway, can
reportedly hit 60 mph in under four seconds and has a
top road speed exceeding 95 mph. It needs about 150 feet
of space to get airborne or land, but once in the sky,
can travel at 40 mph for an estimated 2.5 hours.
Another video of the Maverick, showing off the car's
off-road capacities as well as its takeoff, can be seen
anticipates the first Mavericks will go on sale in
summer of 2011
with a base price of approximately
Want to look anything up?
for more pictures, stories, etc.