Kitty Hawk, the flying car startup backed by Alphabet CEO Larry Page, has finally launched and will be available by the end of this year.
Kitty Hawk president Sebastian Thrun, who helped create Google’s self-driving car, today tweeted a link to Kitty Hawk’s website for the first time. Click on the link and you’ll see a prototype Kitty Hawk in action.
The Kitty Hawk is an electric aircraft which, in its current version, looks a bit like a flying jetski.
A New York Times profile of the Kitty Hawk describes it as “something Luke Skywalker would have built out of spare parts.” The vehicle weighs about 100kg and, according to the first-hand review from tester Cimeron Morrissey, can travel up to 25 miles per hour.
According to the Kitty Hawk site, the machine is “safe, tested and legal to operate in the US”, as long as you fly it in “uncongested areas.”
The first version is designed to fly over water, which is why it looks like a jet-ski. The video shows Morrissey taking off in the Kitty Hawk over a lake in California, gliding about 10 metres above the water.
The company hasn’t said how much a vehicle will cost, but is offering an early $US2000 (£1560) discount for people who are willing to cough up $US100 (£78) now. That early payment will net you both the discount and some test flights with the Kitty Hawk, according to The New York Times.
Here’s the Kitty Hawk in action: