Aero-X is one of those gadgets that makes us think about science fiction movies. It was first announced and shown to the world around 2 years ago. Ever since that day, many showed their interest in buying the hoverbike. Aerofex, the California based manufacturer, took that into consideration and now announces that commercial models will be available in 2017 for around $85,000. Anybody interested in being the first in line can make a deposit of $5,000. More details here.
What Is The Aero-X?
Just as the image implies, it is a hovercraft. The difference between Aero-X and the competition is that Aerofex put a lot of effort into testing the device and combined the regular hovercraft ducted rotors with motorcycles/quad bikes. The result is a design that is very attractive and comfortable for both the driver and the passenger.
Aero-X can reach a maximum speed of 72 km/h and is capable of hovering at a height of up to 3.7 meters. 2 people can be carried at the same time and what is really interesting is that the vehicle is not just for amusement. It also has uses in patrolling, game parks, agriculture and even search and rescue. However, most of those that will initially make a purchase will be interested in flying and having fun.
As expected, different engineering challenges were met in the development of Aero-X. In the past years there were different hoverbikes that were created but they did have problems. This one seems to be the first that will be sold commercially. Mark De Roche, Aerofex founder and CEO declared:
We’ve done a lot of work to learn how to remove the coupling effect. That’s the key for someone who only has motorcycle experience to be able to get on it and feel comfortable right away.
Aero-X weighs 785 lb and can carry a maximum load of 310 lb over any surface according to manufacturer officials. A full fuel tank is estimated to offer 75 minutes of operation. The device was mainly designed as an SUV but De Roche also mentioned:
The Aero-X will have a positive impact on agriculture, herd management, and geo-surveying – particularly in those parts of the world lacking general aviation. Its intuitive operation, low cost, and unique capabilities make it suitable for disaster relief,. We believe it will enable low-altitude utility previously unavailable due to cost and training barriers.
Aero-X has a highly intuitive design and pilot interface. Four-wheel gear is included and there are 2 position control bars. The length is of around 14.8 ft and the hoverbike is 6.8 ft wide. You can opt for different extra features when you buy like flotation pontoons or vehicle airbags.
The only problem is that the vehicle will not be allowed on the road. Current regulations do not allow the presence of such vehicles. However, most enthusiasts and interested shoppers will not want to use Aero-X on the road. This is a vehicle that is designed for lack of roads. Even if that is correct, transport from one area to another might be difficult.