Starting with a roaring sound, the 148-kilogram helicopter-like prototype with a length of 3.9 meters, height of 1.3 meters and width of 3.7 meters came afloat by itself to 3 meters above ground and hovered for several minutes at a testing ground at NEC's Abiko plant in Chiba Prefecture. The test flight was conducted inside a giant cage at an NEC facility in Japan.
The preparations such as the repeated checks on the machine and warnings to reporters to wear helmets took up more time than the two brief demonstrations. The Japanese government wants the country to become a leader in flying cars after missing out on advancements in technology such as electric cars and ride-hailing services.
NEC Corp. showed a large drone-like machine with four propellers that hovered steadily for about a minute. One of the companies that are backing flying vehicles in the United States is Uber Air.
"We at NEC believe that a revolution of travel centered on flying cars will occur", the NEC Corporation Vice President Norihiko Ishiguro told the Associated Press.
The flying auto uses four props, each around 4 to 5 ft (1.2 to 1.5 m), and has three wheels and a compact cabin that's created to eventually carry people.
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For your information, Japan's startup company Cartivator's flying auto crashed during the same test in 2017.
A flying electric auto prototype has been tested in Japan.
Although the goal is to deliver a seamless transition from driving to flight, huge hurdles remain such as battery life, the need for regulations and safety concerns.
The flying vehicle is created to make deliveries on unmanned flights, NEC officials said.
The flying vehicle is not actually a auto, but a quadcopter whose exact specs were not released.