The transportation world of the future will look vastly different from what it looks like today. Automakers all around the world are working hard on autonomous autos that can drive us without any input from a human. Other companies are working on autonomous cars that can fly.
NEC is one of the companies that is working on flying vehicles as a way to get people around in the future, aiming to decrease congestion and shorten transit times. The NEC flying car is similar to a small drone in layout with four propellers arrayed around a passenger cell inside the machine. The company is bragging on its recent test flight seen in the video below.
During the test flight, the flying car was unmanned and appeared to be powered by a tether and remotely controlled by a person on the ground. During the flight, the vehicle rose to 10 feet off the ground and hovered there for nearly a minute. The test flight was conducted inside a giant cage at an NEC facility in Japan.
The purpose of the cage was to protect those on the ground if the vehicle failed or went out of control. Much of the video shows nothing happening with the flying car with a voice speaking in the background. The voice is reportedly repeating machine checks and warnings for those around to wear helmets.
Japan is backing flying cars in a big way as its streets are becoming very congesting in major metropolitan areas. The Japanese government wants to have people moving around its cities by air by 2030. Japan isn’t alone in pushing for flying cars; companies in the US are pushing for the same flying vehicles. One of the companies that are backing flying vehicles in the US is Uber Air.