For almost a century, humans have fantasized about piloting flying cars in the distant, technologically-advanced future, and it looks like we are finally approaching that point. While most major eVTOL innovation is coming from startups or technology companies outside the automotive industry, there are still some major car companies that are innovating the eVTOL space. In this case, we have French automaker Renault, who partnered with motion design hub TheArsenale to create a flying reinterpretation of the famed Renault 4L they’re calling the AIR4.
The Renault AIR4 stands as a technological achievement that celebrates the 60th anniversary of Renault’s famous 4L. By selling more than 8 million units in over 100 countries over a period of more than 30 years, the original Renault 4 was a staple in the automotive space between 1961 and 1992. It might not have had the sex appeal of a supercar, but the Renault 4 helped millions of young drivers get behind the wheel and it served as a great utility car for families and businesses alike. In fact, its status as a “blue jeans” car was the reason why TheArsenale wanted to collaborate with Renault to reinterpret the 4L to soar above the roads it once populated. The AIR4 exists to symbolize independence and freedom, an answer to the worsening problems of gridlocked traffic and the continuing emotional erosion it causes. Aesthetically speaking, the AIR4 retains the classic, rigid body style of the 4L but its body has been changed to a carbon fiber construction.
The AIR4 has no wheels, rather, it features four two-blade propellers, while the chassis sits in the middle of the rota frame. It’s powered by 22,000mAh lithium polymère batteries with a total capacity of 90,000mAh, and it can fly as high as 700m with a take-off speed of 14m/s, restrained at 4m/s for safety reasons, and a landing velocity of 3m/s. Renault has yet to disclose whether or not the AIR4 will be mass-produced.