Flying Motorcycle

The Aerbike was developed to explore the idea that a pilot should be able to stabilize, balance, and control a personal aircraft similar to riding a bike. In engineering, this concept of stability is known as “kinesthetic control”. If the idea proved true, once a throttle was introduced, flying could be made intuitive to anyone capable of riding a motorcycle.

The machine flew for the first time on December 12, 2008 and proved quite stable without any prior training.  Over the following four years, the Aerbike made hundreds of development flights to refine its handling and intuitive control.

The result was the world’s first flying motorcycle, the Aerbike, which could be flown hands-off — without any computers or artificial stabilization — only a pilot at the controls. Although not designed for performance – it has no speedometer or altimeter, the bike reached altitudes up to 10 feet at speeds just below 50 miles an hour.

The project led to five US and international patents,  a published paper by the American Helicopter Society, the Hearst Media 2014 readers’ choice “Inspiration Award”, and an appearance in a Super Bowl commercial celebrating innovation.

Today, advancements to the Aerbike’s technologies are being applied by Aerofex to a large agricultural drone that has the potential to help grow more food on less land, and to a high-speed manned version for Urban Air Racing – and perhaps eventually to aerial commuting.

The Aerbike is currently on display at The Motoring Club in Los Angeles through December 2021.