BEST air vehicle
Pivotal Helix Single-Seat Personal Aerial Vehicle
The future has landed: flying cars have arrived (kind of) in the form of Pivotal’s Helix. One of the most intriguing things about the company’s single-seat personal aerial vehicle? You don’t need an FAA pilot license to get behind the wheel, however, the company notes that “rigorous simulator and flight training sessions are required for pilot qualification” at its customer center in Palo Alto, Calif.
Starting at $190,000, the 348-pound light eVTOL (electric vertical takeoff and landing) can soar up to 5,000 feet above sea level in class G airspace (the only noncontrolled portion of airspace in the U.S.), allowing pilots to travel about 20 miles, or for about two hours at just over 60 miles per hour.
Classified as FAA part 103 (ultralight vehicle), Helix is constructed with carbon fiber composite and disassembles into three pieces to fit into a 16-ft. storage trailer, and the amphibious hull allows the vehicle to float in water for emergency landings. (The company says that the aircraft can go from storage to flight in 30 minutes.) Inside, there’s a digital flight panel with navigation not unlike your average land vehicle, but with joystick and fly-by-wire controls, all designed and built for safety by a team that includes U.S. astronaut Ed Lu, Google alum Alan Eustace and venture capitalist/flight instructor Cyrus Sigari, among others.
Pilots need to weigh 220 pounds and under and have a standing height under 6’5″. Per Pivotal, shipping for the personal plane begins June 10.