While the term “Memorandum of Understanding” sounds like something you get after going through a six-week New Age anger management seminar, it’s actually more of a business love-pledge between two companies, in this case Boeing and Porsche. The two companies have business-love pledged to work together “to study the future of premium urban air mobility vehicles.”
While most reporting about this is calling what they’re developing a “flying car,” it’s not really a flying car at all, in that there doesn’t appear to be any provisions for the resulting vehicle to be able to drive on the ground like a car, and are better thought of as small passenger short-range vertical takeoff and landing (VTOL) aircraft.
The press release describes the venture like this:
“Porsche is looking to enhance its scope as a sports car manufacturer by becoming a leading brand for premium mobility. In the longer term, this could mean moving into the third dimension of travel,” says Detlev von Platen, Member of the Executive Board for Sales and Marketing at Porsche AG. “We are combining the strengths of two leading global companies to address a potential key market segment of the future.”
So, Porsche wants to become a “leading brand for premium mobility,” which is business-talk for more vehicles you probably can’t afford. Only now they’ll be in the air, too!
A 2018 study by Porsche Consulting seems to think that after 2025, the “urban air mobility market” will really be picking up, and since that market barely exists at all, I’m going to posit they pulled that number ex recto, though that doesn’t mean it won’t happen.
I’m sure the future Porsche-Boeing Sky 911 Turbo will be just wonderful, and I look forward to trying to bid on a rusted-out barn find one on Future eBay sometime around 2068.
I will be outbid.