████ # This file was generated bot-o-matically! Edit at your own risk. ████
Hoverbike Makes Its US Debut at Detroit Auto Show - ExtremeTech [extremetech.com]:
(Photo: AERWINS)This year’s North American International Auto Show in Detroit demoed a very special vehicle: the XTURISMO hoverbike.
A lot of the things we talk about here on ExtremeTech look like they were born from old sci-fi films, but few things ever get that comparison in writing. XTURISMO is one of them. Its appearance and gravity-defying ability to glide above the ground have already earned it several Star Wars references, and for good reason.
XTURISMO is the latest development out of AERWINS, a Japanese air mobility startup. While the hoverbike’s center indeed looks like a street bike, it’s surrounded by large fans, lending the vehicle the overall appearance of a massive, rideable drone. The 300-kilogram (661-pound) hoverbike is powered by both an internal combustion engine and a battery, which together lend XTURISMO its 40-kilometer (24.8-mile) cruising range. XTURISMO can zip around at speeds up to 100 kilometers (62 miles) per hour while carrying payloads (AKA drivers) up to 100 kilograms, or 220 pounds.
Detroit news channel WXYZ posted footage of XTURISMO’s American debut on Thursday. After donning a motorcycle helmet, a demonstrator mounted the hoverbike and slowly rose several feet into the air. The demonstrator passed back and forth in front of a building, gradually gaining speed, before smoothly landing the hoverbike on the pavement. Despite the fact that XTURISMO was at least as loud as a leaf blower, the hoverbike’s short demo could have made Howard Stark blush.
Though XTURISMO’s range and speed are undoubtedly lower than some aspirational hoverbike drivers would hope for, the technology has to start somewhere, and mild freeway speeds aren’t a terrible place to start. Of course, none of that matters if you’re turned off by XTURISMO’s $777,000 price tag…and its lack of availability in the US. Because Japan doesn’t consider XTURISMO to be a type of aircraft, special licenses aren’t required to drive it there, and Japanese residents can begin buying and driving the hoverbike as soon as they wish.
Meanwhile, AERWINS is working to create a smaller, all-electric version of XTURISMO to sell in the US. When it’s available (most likely in 2025), AERWINS plans for the new version to have a much more approachable price of $50,000.
- Tesla Is Asking Customers Where They Want New Charging Stations [extremetech.com]
- Apple to Use Globalstar for SOS Satellite Communication on iPhone 14 [extremetech.com]
- This Muzzle, Er, Microphone Lets You Swear Around Friends, Family [extremetech.com]