The sky's the limit as Aston Martin presents new luxury personal aircraft
Aston Martin is best known for luxury on four wheels, but in the past it’s dabbled in the sea with the AM37 Powerboat and Project Neptune personal submarine. Now it looks as if the prestigious British brand has its sights set on the sky as well, as it’s just announced the Volante Vision Concept – an autonomous, hybrid, luxury personal aircraft.
The Volante Vision is designed, in Aston’s words, to ‘reduce congestion, cut pollution and improve mobility’. ¬¬It’s still a concept at the moment and looks unlikely to make production any time soon, but the idea of congestion-free luxury travel is one that’s likely to get many a millionaire pricking up their ears.
It’s been designed in partnership with Cranfield University, Cranfield Aerospace Solutions and Rolls-Royce – ‘uniting the world’s best aerospace experts, propulsion specialists and designers’.
In its current form, the Volante Vision has room for three adults in considerable comfort. The cabin is covered with a fighter-jet-style canopy, and with Aston Martin responsible for the exterior styling, it’s a futuristic yet handsome thing.
Vertical take-off and landing capability ensures it can be piloted in cramped cities without the need for a massive runway. That’s achieved by pivoting the three rotors responsible for propulsion to lie horizontally, aping a helicopter. The set-up should ensure excellent manoeuvrability.
It’s powered by a Rolls-Royce gas-turbine propulsion system, which is mated to an on-board battery pack and gives the Volante Vision a short range on electric power alone.
Aston Martin president and chief executive Andy Palmer said: “With the population in urban areas continuing to grow, congestion in towns and cities will become increasingly demanding. Air travel will be a crucial part in the future of transportation and the Volante Vision Concept is the ultimate luxury mobility solution.
“Humans have always spent on average one hour commuting to and from work, and the distance we live from our workplace has been determined by the methods of transportation available.
“The Volante Vision Concept will enable us to travel further with our hourly commute, meaning we are able to live further away from where we work. Cities will grow, and towns that are today too far away from cities to be commutable will become suburban.”
The Aston Martin Volante Vision concept is unlikely to see production for many years, and will likely be the exclusive preserve of millionaires and billionaires.