Ooooh: More Totally Feasible Flying Car Ideas

Photo: Airbus
Photo: Airbus

At the Geneva Motor Show, aircraft manufacturer Airbus unveiled it was designing a concept car with Italdesign that reportedly—reportedly, we stress—could be airlifted by a drone over a traffic jam.

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According to Automotive News, it’ll work like this: Once a vehicle hits traffic congestion, a drone will pick it up and fly it to a destination. Really.

Here’s more:

The new Italdesign/Airbus concept would be a ground/air vehicle that would offer fast, shared individual mobility in crowded megacities.

Italdesign, Audi’s design and engineering subsidiary, is looking to innovative future mobility solutions to increase its engineering and prototype business, as well as to expand its customer base beyond traditional automakers.

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Neither company commented to Automotive News, but the trade publication says this isn’t related to Airbus’ planned prototype for a helicopter-style car, which it swears it’ll be testing by years-end.

I’m picturing a malfunctioned car-pickup drone scooping up the wrong vehicle. This isn’t a good look. But yeah, sure, flying cars. Cool. Very cool ...

Senior Reporter, Jalopnik/Special Projects Desk

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DISCUSSION

Honestly this stuff always screams “fun final project for the design interns before they go back to school” to me.

Legitimately, sometimes in big companies with long lead times like this, the interns will spend their stint working on real stuff they won’t be allowed to show the public for years, so it’s nice to throw them on a flashy “look shiny!” pie-in-the-sky thing once in a while. Helps them build their portfolios when they leave, and it’s “official” work, not Another Student Project.

Other possible scenarios: a much needed creative break for their long-standing staff, a deliberate blue-sky concept in the name of potentially sparking some creative idea during the process that might be monetized for a real project, or a shot across the bow from the design/engineering team who is trying to force the non-creative departments to step away from their spreadsheets and think outside the box once in a while.

--Industrial Designer who has been involved in each of these scenarios.