Even though this crazy hoverbike hasn’t yet left the inventor’s neighborhood, the high-flying invention has some amazing potential. Designed by Chris Malloy, an Australian man, the bike is capable of traveling at speeds of up to 173mph at 10,000 feet. It could potentially travel even higher, but then users would have to carry oxygen. Classified as an ultralight, users won’t be required to have a pilot’s license to ride it, but might we need traffic lanes at 10,000 feet if it does take off?
The 1170 cc hoverbike engine is air-cooled and runs on regular unleaded fuel (if only it ran on algae… that would be cool!) One tank will net zippy riders about 92 miles. They’ll cost a pretty penny too – up to $40,000 depending on demand – though if Malloy can pull in more than 1,000 orders annually, prices will drop.
In an urban context, the hoverbike would be an absolute nightmare. But potential positive applications include aerial cattle mustering, search and rescue, aerial survey, wildlife and parks, film, military and emergency services, as well as powerline inspection. Quieter and smaller than helicopters, and therefore more fuel efficient, the hoverbike could offer a more sustainable alternative to airborne searches.