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Home Latest The PAL-V Liberty flying car visits Kirkbride Airfeld in Cumbria

The PAL-V Liberty flying car visits Kirkbride Airfeld in Cumbria

A vehicle dubbed the world’s first flying car visited Cumbria.

The Liberty, developed by the Dutch company PAL-V, uses gyroplane technology to fly in the sky. However, it is also licensed for use on European roads.

To fly, a short transformation is performed in which the wings and propellers are deployed from folded positions on the car.

It is also in the process of gaining certification for use by the European Union Aviation Safety Agency, which means it can legally fly in the sky. The final stage is compliance demonstration before flying cars becomes a reality for customers.

The first models are expected to be shipped to customers next year – priced at € 300,000 or £ 260,524.

One of the men behind the Liberty is Andy Wall, who was born in Morecambe and was responsible for the vehicle that visited Kirkbride Airfield in Cumbria. He described some of the features of the vehicle and the work involved.

Andy said, “Nothing is used that is not proven. It requires a runway of only 180 meters and a range in the air of 300 miles.

“The first drawings were completed in 2009 and the first flights were in 2012. After the approval for the road supply was granted in December 2020, EASA was able to create a certification for the flying car.

“Some people ask why we use gasoline when things are moving towards batteries and electricity, especially in the auto world.

“But one kilo of gasoline is equivalent to 37 kilos of battery with the same performance, it’s just too heavy. Until the technology comes – and it becomes – it’s just not feasible.”

Andy learned to fly helicopters and airplanes in the late 1980s, but when he was flying a helicopter from Carlisle Airport he saw something unusual.

The sighting sparked interest in gyroplanes, which led him to work with PAL-V

He explained, “I was actually flying a helicopter in Carlisle and a gyroplane came in.

“I ran into Chris Jones in Kirkbride and he took me in. I was fascinated by its simplicity. It’s raw, with very few moving parts.

“That sure got me into working with gyroplanes. Gyroplanes were 10 years older than the helicopter – but by the time PAL-V came along and developed this, they were stuck in a very small size.

“We said we are going to bring the money and EASA created a category that means they can be bigger and heavier.”

Andy and Freedom were fresh from filming Secrets of the Supercars on Sky and had attended an event in London with dozens of hypercars.

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