This Flying Car Re-Orients Like Boba Fett's Slave One

One of the stranger vehicle designs from the “Star Wars” universe is the Slave One craft piloted by Boba Fett. With the transmission in “P,” the ship sits on the ground like this:

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But once shifted into “D,” it flies through the air in this orientation:

I thought of this when looking at the Alef Model A, a flying car concept proposed by Silicon Valley startup Alef Aeronautics. In its roadbound form, the car is easy on the eyes, something Raymond Loewy might have designed:

Look closer, and you can see that the body is actually a mesh, with the passages between the vanes oriented vertically:

Another queer sign is that you need to open two sets of doors to access the cabin: One in the body, and a secondary door in the cabin proper.

That’s because the cabin is a separate unit from the body, and actually fitted into a gimbal. The body is largely hollow (each wheel contains its own motor) and houses eight rotors.

When transitioning from driving to lift-off, the cabin rotates 90 degrees, and then you fly the thing in this orientation, with the direction of travel being perpendicular to the long axis of the car:

If my explanation wasn’t clear, here’s a somewhat janky video showing the process:

The company tells CNET that they’re aiming to have a production-ready model selling for $300,000 by 2025, and a $35,000 version ready by 2030.

None of that seems even remotely possible, but it is fun to see the outside-the-box thinking.

2040 model, with a projected base price of $25,000

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Source: core77

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