Like a hipster-friendly version of George Jetson's flying car, the Paravelo can take off from any open space and soar up to 4,000 feet. Creators claim that their flying bicycle is the world’s first and are raising funds on Kickstarter to finish designing the bike and get it into mass production.
Call them crazy, but creators John Foden and Yannick Read said they were inspired by the Wright Brothers, former bicycle mechanics and creators of the world's first successful airplane. In their video for the Paravelo, the “flying bicycle” looks like a wild combination of parasail and a bicycle and is helped along by a gas-powered, motorized fan.
The bicycle can be detached from its trailer and the fan worn like a backpack. In that configuration, the Paravelo does not require a license to fly, at least not in “most territories," the company says.
XploreAir claims that its “world’s first” flying bicycle can travel at 25 miles per hour in the air for up to three hours without needing to refuel. On land, the Paravelo tows a “lightweight” trailer that carries its large motorized fan and sail. The flying bicycle also folds up small enough to fit indoors, XploreAir says.
The Paravelo also has a built-in tent for what the duo call “flamping,” or fly-camping.
Foden and Read have turned to Kickstarter to sell products ranging from T-shirts to full-size bicycles that mirror the design of the Paravelo, to raise the £50,000 that they said is necessary to finish their design and put the flying bicycle on store shelves. Unfortunately, even a final version will not be cheap: XploreAir likens the Paravelo’s cost to “a small family car.”
The finalized version will include a GPS tracker to plot the bike’s movements across land and air. XploreAir says that Parajet, makers of the SkyCar flying automobile, will help manufacturer their flying bike when the design is complete.
The Paravelo is not yet available for purchase, but the company hopes to have it on shelves as soon as possible.
Thomas Halleck is a tech reporter for the International Business Times, covering Google, wearables, product reviews and mobile news....