Netherlands-based flying car company Pal-V is preparing to start serial production of the world’s first combined road / air vehicle after agreeing contracts with a key supplier and finalizing certification arrangements.
Pal-V’s agreement with Spanish company Airtificial Aerospace and Defense includes the supply of several composite parts including the fuel tank, body parts, propeller and rotor blades.
The Liberty combines both flying and driving capabilities in one vehicle. During flight is a two-seat gyroplane with a top speed of 180 km/h (110mph), a maximum take-off weight of 910kg (2,000 lbs), a range of 500km (310 miles) and flight endurance of four hours .
On the ground, once it has been transformed into a three-wheeled car, it offers a top speed of 160km/h (100mph) and range of 1,315 kilometers (817 miles). It uses two Rotax 912iS engines.
Earlier this year Pal-V finalized its certification basis with the European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) after several years of discussion with the regulatorand will use the Certification Specifications for Small Rotorcraft, CS-27. The company still has to conduct compliance demonstration before starting production of the Liberty flying car.
The EASA type certificate is accepted in 80% of the world market, including the US and China. According to Pal-V it has taken orders from people in 14 countries and is training its first “fly drivers” inhouse
The company obtained permission for the Liberty to be driven on European roads last year.
The PAL-V Liberty uses a high amount of composites in its construction to reduce its weight to 664kg (1,500 lbs) while maintaining stiffness and strength of the vehicle.
Pal-V is finalising its production facility in the Netherlands. Airtificial has supported the company in the optimization of the final design, as well as led the proposal of the manufacturing process, the development of the necessary tools, the industrialization, the production and the final validation of the different pieces.
Enrique Sanz, CEO of Airtificial said: “This is an important milestone for our aerospace division because we are not only increasing our business for the coming years, but also positioning our business for future markets such as flying cars, hand in hand with one of the leaders of this sector, Pal-V”
Robert Dingemanse, CEO and founder of Pal-V explains: “It is vital for us to have a strong supplier base which can grow with us in the emerging Advanced Air Mobility market. Having suppliers for our aviation parts with many years of aerospace experience is vital for the safety and certification of our product.
“Airtificial has a proven track record and we have been working together now for a number of years. We are proud to announce this next step in our collaboration.”