OSHKOSH, Wis., Aug. 1, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- Kit manufacturer Samson Sky released the full vision of the Switchblade flying sports car for the first time during AirVenture 2018 in Oshkosh, Wisconsin. While not fully completed and flown, it still generated considerable interest during the week of AirVenture, gathering 104 Reservations for the high-performance driving/flying vehicle. Samson announced that they are now at Reservation Position #765.
"Many thousands of people were incredibly excited to see the prototype with the full body, wings and tail," stated Samson Events Coordinator Lindsey Wehr. "Pilots and non-pilots alike kept commenting, 'Wow, this is the real deal!'"
According to Reservations Manager Martha Hall Bousfield, Samson Sky now has Owners and Reservation Holders from 20 countries internationally and 42 states in the U.S. "As the greatest aviation celebration in the world, Oshkosh was the perfect place to debut the Switchblade prototype. It seems that regardless of where people live, they have a common dream of a truly practical flying car," she stated. "The majority of our new Reservation Holders plan to use their Switchblade for a combination of business and pleasure."
One of the noteworthy announcements made at AirVenture was a recent change in the propeller design to achieve a 35% reduction in propeller noise. "We already had a fairly quiet design, but since we are accumulating so many Reservations, even before we fly, we felt it was worth the time and energy to push the noise reduction a bit further," stated Switchblade designer and Samson CEO Sam Bousfield. "I think that people will be using their Switchblade more than they thought, when they start to realize the time and hassle that the vehicle can save them. With the increase in use, typically comes an increase in noise, so we wanted to mitigate that through design."
The Switchblade is classified as a motorcycle by the U.S. Department of Transportation, but the Samson Sky team likes to call it a flying sports car because of its high performance. The engine is a turbo-charged, lightweight 190 hp liquid-cooled V4 that is capable of 0-60 in 6.5 seconds and a top speed of 125+ mph/201+ kph. In the air it will cruise at 160 mph/257 kph, with a top speed of up to 190 mph/305 kph and a range of 450 miles/724 km. Using Road & Track's slalom testing parameters, the ground test vehicle out-performed everything in its wheelbase per Road & Track's historical data base.
While popular news and social media talk about possible "driverless" flying taxis from Uber and others, Samson takes a different approach by making the aircraft easier to fly. "Flying is fun. Why would you want to take the joy away?" said Bousfield, who is a private pilot. Instead of making autonomous vehicles, Samson is designing vehicles that are simpler to drive and fly, reducing the risk of some of the biggest areas of pilot error.
For more information about the Switchblade and to follow its progress to launch, visit: www.SamsonSky.com.