Toyota appears to be the latest automaker venturing into the world of flying cars.
Auto Guide has uncovered intriguing trademarks from Toyota Engineering and Manufacturing North America (TEMA) that depict a flying vehicle with wheels that can be driven on land and flown in the air thanks to four powerful propellers.
The patent describes the vehicle as being able to transform from a land vehicle to a personal helicopter thanks to arms that extend upward. Rotors hidden within the wheels would then start to spin, providing the vehicle with enough lift to send it skywards. The finished result resembles a huge drone.
Toyota’s intriguing creation could use any manner of power system to feed the electric motors found on each of the four wheels. This powertrain could be a hydrogen fuel cell, battery pack, gas turbine generator, or another form of power system, the company says.
Unlike many other ‘flying cars’ to emerge in recent times, Toyota’s creation can legitimately be referred to as a flying car as it does double as a car. Many other ‘flying cars’ we’ve seen are simply personal flying modules that don’t resemble an actual car.
Many questions still remain about the future of flying cars in the automotive world. Some believe that they could be the future of transportation. On the other hand, critics argue that they will clog up air space, be exceptionally noisy, create massive wind gusts, turn out to be difficult to operate – and potentially be very dangerous.
It remains to be seen if Toyota has any intentions of making this flying car a reality, or it has just patented this tech in case flying cars ever take off (pun intended).