Music legend Jean-Michel Jarre becomes first passenger in KleinVision flying car

Music legend Jean-Michel Jarre becomes first passenger in KleinVision flying car
  • PublishedApril 24, 2024

AirCar’s co-founder says his company is “giving cars the freedom they symbolised 50 years ago” after French electronic artist Jean-Michel Jarre took off in Slovenia.

Jean-Michel Jarre is no stranger to pioneering technology – so it was fitting he has become the first passenger to take off in KleinVision’s flying car.

Known for his laser show concerts – watched by millions – he was a frontrunner in the electronic, ambient and new-age genres of music.

And as a long-time supporter of future tech – he jumped at the chance to complete two flights in the record-breaking vehicle at Piestany international airport in Slovenia.

“One second you speak to the driver, and next, you are up there in the air. An amazing experience,” he said.

French musician Jean Michel Jarre has become the first passenger to fly in the AirCar. Pic: KleinVision
Image:Jean-Michel Jarre has become the first passenger to fly in the AirCar. Pic: KleinVision

The vehicle transforms in minutes from sports car to plane and became the first flying car to complete an intercity flight in 2021.

The car has a 1.6 litre BMW engine although KleinVision’s co-founder Anton Zajac told Sky News: “As soon as the technology improves, we will simply run on batteries.”

He added: “We are bridging the gap between the road and the sky, giving cars the freedom they symbolised 50 years ago.”

In order to get that freedom, you’ll need not only a driver’s licence and a pilot’s licence but also a specialised two-to-three month flying course in order to operate the AirCar. Mr Zajac hopes it’ll hit the market in around a year after being approved for flight in 2022.

The AirCar takes around a minute and a half to transform from a plane to a car. Pic: KleinVision
Image:The AirCar takes around a minute-and-a-half to go from plane to car. Pic: KleinVision

It was made in Slovenia by Professor Stefan Klein and Mr Zajac but theirs isn’t the only flying car taking off.

In the US, Alef Aeronautics’s futuristic-looking Model A became the first road-worthy flying car to receive approval for test flights from the Federal Aviation Administration in July 2022.

It has already had nearly 3,000 pre-orders – and unlike KleinVision’s AirCar, it is electric.

The start-up is backed by Elon Musk’s SpaceX and can “drive on the street, take off vertically when needed, and fly overhead above traffic,” according to Alef’s website.

However, it is considered a “low-speed vehicle” so it won’t be able to drive faster than about 25mph and would still require US government approval to be tested on public roads.

In March, KleinVision sold the rights to the technology that powers its cars to a Chinese company called Hebei Jianxin Flying Car Technology Company.

China is leading the charge in developing flying car technology, although most of it focuses on ​​electric Vertical Take-Off and Landing (eVTOL) vehicles.

The UK government said it expected electric flying taxis to be a reality by 2030 in its Future of Flight action plan.

“This is not science fiction. It has already started,” the report said.


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