Airspeeder Mk3 is the world’s first fully functioning electric flying racing car and will compete in an upcoming remotely-piloted racing series this year.
Australian and UK based Alauda’s new Airspeeder is the real-world equivalent of something you would expect from a futuristic Star Wars Pod Race, and it will be looking to replicate the same racing achievements as Anakin Skywalker, albeit it unmanned, as plans move forward for remotely-piloted competitions in 2021.
Considered the world’s first electric flying race car, the Airspeeder Mk3 is a fully functioning carbon-fiber eVTOL (electric vertical take-off and landing vehicle) capable of racing at speeds over 75mph.
Believing innovation and technological advancement comes from competition, Airspeeder and Alauda have created the remotely-piloted Airspeeder Mk3 Racing Series and are aiming to produce ten identical Airspeeder Mk3 electric flying race cars to be supplied to racing teams in 2021.
Built at Alauda Aeronautic’s headquarters in Adelaide, Australia, the Airspeeder has been designed in collaboration with other aerospace, automotive, and motor racing experts with input from McLaren, Babcock Aviation, Boeing, Jaguar Land Rover, Rolls-Royce, and Brabham Automotive.
Featuring an “octocopter X formation,” the Airspeeder Mk3’s design allows for the same sharp hairpin style turns seen on the Formula One race-track but with the added functionality of being able to move vertically also.
With the Airspeeder being piloted from the ground by a remote operator, advanced safety systems never been seen before on an eVTOL craft are being tested and validated to ensure safe flying conditions in the air. These include LiDAR and Radar collision avoidance systems that work to create a “virtual forcefield” around the Airspeeder to avoid mid-air crashes while racing.
An innovative “slide and lock” system has also been developed for the rapid removal and replacement of the electric batteries during race pit stops.
The initial race plan is to gather vital information on vehicle dynamics, performance, safety, and powertrain technology in preparation for the manned Mk4 Airspeeder and a manned racing series in 2022.