This just in - Toyota Engineering and Manufacturing North America (TEMA) has filed for a patent of a new flying car design. An innovative flying helicopter car with wheels will be the Japanese car manufacturer's first attempt at flying cars. The patent dug up by Auto Guide talks about a "dual mode vehicle, wheels for the vehicle and a method of transitioning the vehicle from a land mode to a flight mode." When the Toyota flying car transforms from land mode to flight mode, arms extend upwards and wheels begin to spin.
The wheels of the Toyota flying car are equipped with rotors that spin like typical helicopter rotors, producing lift allowing the vehicle to get air bourne. According to the patent, each wheel/rotor will use an electric motor fed by a power system.
The powertrain of the Toyota flying car could be a battery pack, gas turbine generator, hydrogen fuel cell based system or "any other energy conversion device capable of generating sufficient electric power to drive the wheels of the dual mode vehicle."
While in its land mode, Toyota flying car can be steered by changing the speed of the individual wheels on one side of the vehicle. For example, the steering is done somewhat how its done on a tank by slowing down the tracks on one side.
Speaking of flying cars, we reported only a few days ago that the world's first flying car is set to go on sale this month. Terrafugia Transition is the brainchild of graduates of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. The company founded in 2006 was later acquired by Volvo’s parent company Geely in 2017.
Another flying car that you can actually buy is the PAL-V Liberty, which was officially unveiled at the 2018 Geneva Motor Show. During the unveiling of the flying car, PAL-V had announced that the Liberty deliveries would begin by the end of this year.