Airspeeder has unveiled the Mk3 racing prototype; the world’s first remotely piloted, full-scale electric flying racing car.
The racing aircraft was announced at Goodwood Speed Week and it was also revealed that the production version of this vehicle is being created at the sport’s technical headquarters in Adelaide, Australia.
The Airspeeder is also scheduled to take part in remotely piloted races throughout the second half of 2021. Alauda Aeronautics, sister-company to Airspeeder, is currently building ten of these vehicles for races set to take place on three continents in the coming months.
Matthew Pearson, founder of both Airspeeder and Alauda Aeronautics, says the company is following in the footsteps of the likes of Bentley and Mercedes as it looks to accelerate a zero-emissions, advanced air-mobility revolution through sporting competition.
He said: “Some of the very first Mercedes, Bentleys and Renaults were racing cars. The pioneers of these marques knew that in order to advance a mobility revolution, they must build their machines for racing. At Airspeeder, we proudly echo that philosophy. To accelerate the arrival of advanced air mobility technology we must leverage sporting competition. The Airspeeder Mk3 is the result of years of engineering, testing and development with the pure purpose of creating the ultimate performance electric flying car.”
The Mk3 remotely-piloted electric flying racing car delivers 320kW, equalling an Audi SQ7 performance SUV. The Audi weighs 2,500kg whilst the Airspeeder racing craft (without pilot) weighs just 130kg. It can lift a weight of more than 80kg, proving the viability of the powertrain for piloted races. Acceleration from 0-62mph takes 2.8 seconds and the Speeder can climb to 500 meters.
The Mk3 vehicle also has a thrust-to-weight ratio of 3.5, which exceeds that of an F-15E Strike Eagle (thrust-to-weight ratio of 1.2).
Felix Pierron, head of design of Airspeeder and Alauda, commented: “My first principle is that our Speeders are racing craft first. In ideating a design approach I explored the classic forms of racing cars from the 1950s and 1960s. This was a time when the requirement for beauty was equal to technological and aerodynamic necessity. As a designer, there is no better place to start. I am excited to see something that started as a vision on paper taken to the air. My dreams are no longer my own, they are now an incredible reality to inspire the world.
“This is pure innovation. We are not constrained by four wheels or a square frame. We are leading an entirely new aesthetic; racing flying vehicles. It will take at least a century to define an era as we are today. I am very proud to fulfil my responsibility of making machines that are as beautiful as they are purposeful.”