2017 ItalDesign x Airbus Pop.Up – Concept Debrief

Maybe all those ‘flying car’ dreamers and visionaries were just too smart – by half.

What if a self-piloted EV road module was left behind when your drone-copter arrives?  That self-driving EV skateboard could drive itself home or to meet you later at the office.  Meanwhile, your transport pod will be under the eight counter-rotating blades of the quad-copter above you?

Pretty intense in how real this fantasy traffic-avoider feels.  Thrilled to have the big brains of Giugiaro and Airbus working together to flesh out the idea.

Here is a crude animation of how this will work.

The insight is rock solid: three innovations are coming to maturity in a few years at the same time.  Each a game-changer:

— long-range EVs

— self-driving cars

— heavy-lift UAV quadcopters

The Pop.Up is impressively finished as an engineering exercise.  60-mile range for the drone, and a max (unladen) flying speed of 60-mph as well.  Just two passengers inside the Capsule, which is designed with an external safety cell, a la the Smartcar, to improve safety in action.  The issue with this first iteration is an airspeed, once laden with the passenger box, drops drastically.  A top end of perhaps 20-mph might need improvement to beat rush-hour.

Most enticing of all?  The ground and air transport modules seem ideal for the sharing economy.  So perhaps owners would just buy their own passenger capsule?  Universal mounts for the upper and lower sections might even make these future-compatible with even faster, longer-range air/ground module upgrades of the future.

Cleverly, the Pop.Up’s road module is able to share its larger battery’s juice with the pod and drone above.

Next horizon after all these technologies converge?  Airbags on the floor.. in case your drone’s claws get slippery?  Check out the gallery and tech specs of each module below.

 

2017 ItalDesign x Airbus Pop.Up

POP.UP TECHNICAL SPECIFICATION

 

AIR MODULE

 

DIMENSIONS
Lengthmm.4403
Heightmm.847
Widthmm.5000
Rotorsn.4+4
Propeller diametermm.1780

 

POWERTRAIN
Power trainElectric
Motors8
Total power136 kW
Motor power (each motor) (MCP)17 kW
Range (without payload)100  km
Charging time15 minutes
Empty weight ratio (EW/GW)43.90 %
Total battery(ies) energy / capacity70.0 kWh
Disc Loading30.4 kg/m2
Tip Speed150 m/s
Air Mode

 

 

Number of passengers

 

2

Vehicle maximum gross weight600 kg

 

PERFORMANCETop Speed (stand-alone module)100 km/h

 

                 

GROUND MODULE

 

DIMENSIONS
LengthMm3115
HeightMm681
Width (front/rear)Mm1848/ 1900
Front overhangMm581
Rear overhangMm534
Kerb weightKg200

 

PERFORMANCETop speedkm/h100

 

POWERTRAIN
PowertrainElectric
Motorwheels2 (Rear)
Total Power60 kW
Range130 km
Charging time15  Minutes
Total battery(ies) energy / capacity15 kWh

 

CAPSULE

 

DIMENSIONS
Lengthmm2647
Heightmm1415
Widthmm1540
Number of Passenger2
Kerb weightkg200