A New Flying Car By Google’s Co-Founder Larry Page, Cora

Remember the flying cars in the TV series the Jetsons? Flying cars are not just for cartoons anymore! Google’s co-founder, Larry Page, has launched an autonomous flying taxi firm called Kitty Hawk. Could this mean competition for commuters and business travelers that use apps like Lyft? To reinvent personal aircraft transportation, Page invested in two flying start-ups, Zee.Aero and Kitty Hawk in 2010. The flying car projects were kept secret until a report by a bombshell investigation by Bloomberg Businessweek found that Page had invested $100 million into the project. Going back to 2014, Zee Aero and Kitty Hawk have filed dozens of different aircraft registrations with the FAA. These include electric gliders, rotorcraft, and fixed-wing designs that function more like traditional, commercial planes.


The current prototype, Cora, is an electric, autonomous air taxi/commercial plane. It was reported to travel at 93 mph, with a range of 100 kilometers. Because it can take off and land vertically, it doesn’t require long runways. Cora is being piloted by the government of New Zealand as a part of a commercial air taxi service. Part of the goal in using Cora in New Zeland is for the country to reach net-zero emissions by 2050. The unveiling was showcased on YouTube:

Source: Kitty Hawk

What’s the Competition Look Like?

At the 2018 Geneva Motor Show, the PAL-V Liberty Sport and the PAL-V Liberty Pioneer were introduced. These are made by the PAL-V Dutch company, claiming the world’s first production-ready flying cars. The PAL-V vehicles are gyroplanes, which, according to the company makes them “much safer and easier to fly” than helicopters or small fixed-wing planes. But you need more than a driver’s license to take this one for a spin. In fact, you’ll also need to get a pilot’s license. And when the Liberty is in flying mode, it must comply with FAA regulations. Which probably means that you can’t just take off if you are stuck in a traffic jam on the freeway.

And it’s not inexpensive. In addition to the $25,000 non-refundable deposit, the Dual Mode Sports Vehicle is expected to retail for $399,000–$599,999. When will the production-ready flying cars be ready? Estimates are by the end of 2018. Here’s the video on PAL-V flying car:

Source: PAL- V

Other competitors…

  • Airbus launched their first successful flight of its self-piloted flying car
  • Velocopter is working on flying taxis in Dubai
  • Uber is working with NASA on its flying taxis and
  • German startup Lilium is creating aircraft smaller and quieter than helicopters to travel in urban areas
  • Lyft is creating partners and alliances with groups like nuTonomy, Magna and General Motors
  • Ford is investing $1 billion in Argo AI, an artificial intelligence start-up focused on developing autonomous vehicle technology
  • GM acquired Cruise for an estimated $1 billion in cash, stock and incentive packages
  • BMW has joined forces with Lego Technic to create a flying motorcycle concept, the Hover Ride, based on a Lego modeling kit
  • Toyota goal is to create a flying car piloted – potentially an athlete – that will deliver the Olympic torch to launch 2020 Tokyo Olympic games
  • Terrafugia’s flying car, TF-X, will have vertical take-off and will hit 320km/hr and offer an 800km range
  • AirQuadOne was created by Neva Aerospace, a UK-based syndicate comprised of five European aviation and robotics companies.

The future is flying high!


@DrNatalie, Success Cloud, VP, Salesforce.com


Dr. Natalie Keynote: Social Media And The Automotive Industry

Here’s my talk on Social Media Excellence in the Automotive Industry:

The summit is an exclusive environment for senior-level OEM, dealer, and finance executives in the car industry. In preparation for my keynote talk, I conducted some research to compare the level of social media engagement in the automotive industry. The platform I used was www.InfiniGraph.com

The point of the research was to show Marketers how to go beyond the “Like” and actually measure and compare engagement (As well as other metrics like post volume, best time of day to post to get the most engagement, what type of content gets the highest engagement…)

Here’s where you can access the data from the study I conducted on the automotive / car industry social media engagement and the comparisons: http://bit.ly/AutoSummit2013

In the research, we looked at various vertical market segments in the auto industry. Here’s a list of some of the groups of cars we compared:

• Mercedes Benz
• Audi
• Jaguar
• Lexus
• Infiniti
• Volvo
• Toyota
• Mazda
• Honda
• Nissan
• Volkswagen
• Hyundai

Here’s a link to my slides from the Social Media and Automotive Summit:

“The Evolution of Social Media Marketing”

Social Media and Social Media Marketing are evolving at a rapid pace. The question is– is the automotive industry capitalizing on it and getting social media ROI from their social marketing and sales initiatives. The evolution of social media marketing is focused on engagement — “talking to” is now “talking with” —  “interrupting” is now “engaging" and  “marketing communications” is now “one-to-one conversation” or “one-to-many conversation.”

In addition, the consensus among many marketing executives is that engagement leads to persuasion, utility, and ultimately inspiration as well as advocacy and referrals — which is how word-of-mouth leads to sales.  My presentation explains how to analyze a brand’s engagement and how to understand what content creates the strongest engagement with a target audience. It also looks at how to focus content spend to achieve a higher ROI by increasing key target market audience size, engagement, and sales.

“Social ROI – Qualitative & Quantitative Benefits”

The Social Media Summit closed with a panel discussion featuring thought leaders from both the OEM and Dealer communities.  The discussion focused on the ROI delivered by Social 2.0 – both the qualitative benefits that the innovators and visionaries believed in as an act of faith, and the quantitative benefits that pragmatists required before making significant investments.  Areas of commonality and divergence between OEM and Dealer was the basis for a spirited discussion, providing a last opportunity for all delegates to engage the panelists and one another, leaving the Summit with newly gained insights on successful social media strategies in the automotive industry.


Dr. Natalie’s Executive Success Acceleration Firm
We work with brands & software companies to deliver increased revenue and decreased costs.
Our Motto? Learn. Share. Grow!

@DrNatalie L. Petouhoff

Want to see how to get an ROI from Social Media? Check out these fun videos:
Video 1: Building the Business Case for Social Media
Video 2: How to Measure the ROI of Social Media
Video 3: How Social Media Benefits the Whole Company

Here’s My book on How Businesses can Drive Sales on Facebook: Like My Stuff: How To Monetize Your Facebook Fans

Want to get more info on the business use of social media? Connect with me here:
LinkedIn: DrNataliePetouhoff
G+ : Google Plus posts
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/natalie.petouhoff

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