Start saving your bitcoins (or whatever it is you do to accumulate a sizeable pile of them). If your bucket list includes being the first on your block to own an operational and really cool hoverbike, your wait is over. The Russian startup company Hoversurf announced it has achieved its goal of …
Making flying as easy as riding a bike.
OK, a really dangerous bike, but that’s why you want one, right? The Scorpion-3 was unveiled this week by Hoversurf in a warehouse at its headquarters in San Francisco. The company – whose motto is “Aim high” (with an implied “Kids, don’t try this at home”) – began as a manufacturer of heavy-lift cargo drones with carrying capacities ranging from 90 to 2,500 kg. (198 to 5511 lbs.). That should be good news for the ‘bigger biker’, right?
Not quite. While based on the same platform as the cargo drones, the Scorpion-3 has a weight limit of 266 pounds of “amateur and professional navigators.” That’s a code phrase for ‘extreme sports enthusiasts’ and other adrenaline addicts who can ride a fast bike AND deal with it being 33 feet (10 meters) off the ground – the current restricted altitude limit.
Well, “fast” is relative – the top speed of the Scorpion-3 is currently restricted to 33 mph (53 kmph) but that undoubtedly seems a lot faster when flying. Hoversurf says its engineers used a standard motorbike design to make it easy for riders with cycle experience to handle the Scorpion-3. For lift and thrust, an electric motor powers the quadcopter propellers taken from the drone platform and can reportedly keep the Scorpion-3 aloft for 27 minutes – more than enough time to generate enough excitement to require a change of pants.
Hoversurf recommends wearing the same protective gear one would dress in for a motocross bike ride – the altitude limit imposed by the software negates the need for a parachute … if you’re worried about wearing a parachute, perhaps you should stick to your Schwinn.
It’s cool, it works and it’s a much more modern design than previous hoverbike prototypes. So why should you be prepared to cash in some bitcoins? The current asking price for a Scorpion-3 is $150,000. That’s a lot to pay just to distinguish yourself from your friends driving Lamborghinis or a Tesla Model X.
Then again, it’s a hoverbike!