WATCH | Flying motorcycle takes to the skies

Look ma, no wheels! The Lazareth Moto Volante prototype hovers 1m off the ground attached to stabilising tethers.
Look ma, no wheels! The Lazareth Moto Volante prototype hovers 1m off the ground attached to stabilising tethers.
Image: Supplied

Is it a motorcycle? Is it a helicopter?

Actually, it's both. 

French custom automotive builder Ludovic Lazareth has conjured up a number of unusual motorised creations in the past and the Moto Volante flying bike is his latest.

It rides much like a regular motorcycle on the road - except for having four wheels instead of two - but when the rider gets tired of traffic jams the contraption changes, Transformer-like, into a jet-powered quadcopter that soars over the gridlock.

After pulling over to the side of the road, the rider presses a button to convert the Moto Volante to fly mode. It takes about a minute for the jets mounted in each wheel hub to warm up, upon which the wheels tilt 90 degrees to provide take-off and gliding thrust. There's a parachute mounted in each wheel in case of emergencies.

Lazareth expects to launch the Moto Volante later this year at a price of about R8m.  

Whether or not this oddball Jetson-style creation will ever really see production it's a very clever piece of engineering and worth a look. Lazareth has posted a video of the prototype in action, where it hovers a metre off the ground attached to tethers.

When it's not airborne the Moto Volante transforms into a four-wheeled motorcycle.
When it's not airborne the Moto Volante transforms into a four-wheeled motorcycle.
Image: Image: Supplied

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