The 5 Best Flying Cars In Movies That We Wish Were Real

Flying cars have long been part of popular culture and the most common fantasy representation of transportation in the not-so-far-away future. Perhaps the most popular type of flying car is the saucer-like vehicle featured in the cartoon "The Jetsons," though many people are no doubt thinking about the DeLorean from "Back to the Future" or more recent examples like the flying car from Harry Potter.

There are countless depictions of flying cars in the media that represent both the possible and the impossible, and though some of them are plain, others are very creative and all of them are magical. It's easy to see the appeal of these vehicles — they're stylish, move at fast speeds in impossible ways, and are often powered by long-lasting energy sources. The real-life version of this technology takes the form of eVTOL, but its fictional counterparts shed the limitations of physics to include everything from enchanted passenger cars to hoverbikes and plane-car hybrids.

The Spinners from Blade Runner

When it comes to depictions of flying cars in cinema, one movie that often comes to mind is "Blade Runner." The sci-fi universe depicted in the movies is home to fictional cars called Spinners, and they are pretty awesome. The term is generic, and therefore each vehicle is simply referred to as a Spinner rather than by a specific model name. For many "Blade Runner" fans, the Spinners are a true stand-out example of a fantasy flying car.

These futuristic vehicles can be driven like normal cars on the road, but where's the fun in that? The real excitement is when they take off vertically, hover, and cruise like aircraft. In the context of the movie, this was a vehicle used by the Los Angeles Police Department to survey the citizens in the same way that police officers in the real world use patrol cars. The Spinners appeared in four movies, and "Back to the Future Part II" also paid tribute to the iconic movie car. The Spinner concept was designed by artist and industrial designer Syd Mead, who also made designs for movies like "Tron" and "Aliens."

The Ford Anglia 105E from Harry Potter

Fans of the Harry Potter franchise are in love with the flying car that was owned by Arthur Weasley — and the thing is, this is actually a real car. Sadly, the real-world version of this vehicle doesn't fly, as that would require magic, literally. In the movie, the Ford Anglia is a normal car until it receives an enchantment that gives it flying capabilities. Though there are far more exciting aspects of the Wizarding World, people really love seeing this car whizzing through the sky, if only on the big screen.

Most will remember Ron Weasley using the fantasy vehicle to rescue his friends. If you ever want to see the car used in the movie in real life, you can find the 1966 Ford Anglia 105E at the National Motor Museum. This car is a product of Great Britain; it boasts an in-line 4-cylinder engine with a 997cc capacity, 41 horsepower at 5,000 rpm, and a max speed of only 76 miles per hour, according to the museum.

The Chitty Chitty Bang Bang car

If you're even a casual fan of classic MGM films, you've likely seen the 1968 movie "Chitty Chitty Bang Bang." In the film, the car after which the movie is named can fly, float, and be driven just like a normal car. The vehicle's fictional British inventor Caractacus Potts restored the car after an automobile accident during a race. This is important because the story of "Chitty Chitty Bang Bang" was inspired by a racecar that the author Ian Fleming — who also wrote the James Bond books — had seen as a child.

The cars used for the film were customized vehicles. There were a total of seven built for production, and six are known to still exist today, with one on display at the National Motor Museum. Only one of the vehicles created for the movie was actually operational. According to Motorious, the functional movie vehicle packed a 3-liter 6-cylinder engine from Ford, and it got its iconic looks, in part, from a piece of a dashboard taken out of an old World War I fighter jet.

The DeLorean DMC-12 from Back to the Future

When it comes to flying cars in media, the "Back to the Future" films are often a topic of conversation. These are the movies people turn to when they wonder why we still don't have flying cars, and that's partly due to how the movie from the 1980s made the concept of a flying car seem so simple. However, the Doc's DeLorean DMC-12 wasn't technically a flying car, but rather a time machine that, through fantasy physics, was able to fly as part of its movement through spacetime. 

That technicality aside, it's impossible to talk about flying cars and not mention the "Back to the Future" machine. Though the real-life version of this vehicle isn't able to blink out of existence, of course, it remains a pop culture icon, and that popularity helped bring the model back from the dead. The DeLorean was revealed in 2022 with a new aesthetic and EV underpinning, and it's now referred to as the Alpha 5, hopefully kickstarting an entirely new line of electric vehicles.

The Landspeeder from Star Wars

The Star Wars movies are a part of American culture that binds generations. Sure, not everyone is a fan of the science fiction universe, but the movies still hold a special place in the hearts of many. Though the stories have carried the Star Wars universe for decades, there are certain elements from within the movies that stand out as particularly eye-catching. One example of that is the Landspeeder, a type of ground-based hovering car that was owned by Luke Skywalker and featured at various points in the series. 

The Star Wars universe is home to several different versions of the Landspeeder, including the X-34 model owned by Skywalker, the XP-38 sport model, and the inexpensive V-35 Courier (via Star Wars). It's easy to see the appeal of these flying cars: they're simple to get in and out of, there's enough room for two people and at least one android, and they can travel anywhere there's open space regardless of whether there's a paved road available. Unfortunately, it's unlikely we'll ever see a personal-use vehicle like this become a reality, but it's fun to dream about.