With the release of its official introductory video this Monday, the new Kitty Hawk Flyer prototype has gotten a lot of attention. It’s being called a flying car, though not by Kitty Hawk itself. While there are several true flying cars under development, in this case the ‘car’ part doesn’t apply. The Flyer doesn’t drive on the road. In fact, it doesn’t have wheels at all.
Calling it a flying jet ski would have been a lot closer to the truth in terms of both design and use. What the Flyer really is is a single-seat, all-electric ultralight octocopter designed for over-water operation. Kitty Hawk specifies fresh water—the Flyer isn’t an ocean-going vessel.
As an ultralight, the Flyer operates under FAR 103. Users won’t need a pilot’s license of any sort and the aircraft itself won’t need to be registered or certified as airworthy. Part 103 also requires that the vehicle not be operated in most controlled airspace without ATC permission or near congested areas at all.
As of yet, Kitty Hawk is sharing very little information about the Flyer publicly other than that it expects to be selling the aircraft by the end of the year. The company hasn’t set a price point yet, but interested individuals can sign up for a $100 membership that will lead to a spot on the wait list and a $2,000 discount when the time comes to sign the check. Kitty Hawk also states on its website that the final design will likely be different from the prototype shown in the video.
Learn more at Kitty Hawk.