Japanese Venture Launches $680,000 'Hoverbike'

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A Tokyo-based venture firm has unveiled its so-called "hoverbike", a motorcycle-type vehicle that flies through the air like something out of a sci-fi movie.

A.L.I. Technologies gave a demonstration of the manned drone at a motor circuit in central Japan and started taking orders on Tuesday.

The hoverbike uses six rotors to float above the ground. It is powered by an internal combustion engine and electric motors, enabling it to fly for up to 40 minutes.

The vehicle is priced at about 680,000 dollars, but it cannot be used over Japan's public roads for now. The company says this is probably the first hoverbike to be mass-produced and sold in Japan.

President Katano Daisuke of A.L.I. Technologies said "We're aiming to make a convenient machine that's easy to ride. As a first step toward that end, we want to boost global awareness of the 'hoverbike' and its capability."

A. L. I. Technologies says it will work with Yamanashi Prefecture in central Japan to test the hoverbike with a view to using it during disasters.


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