Finally: An affordable personal blimp
Skyacht Aircraft's steerable hot-air blimp should retail for less than $200,000.
It could be the 21st-century version of the Sunday drive: Blow up the hot-air blimp, take it for a spin, then fold it up and put it away.
Of course, that's assuming you've got $200,000 liquefying your Tiffany money clip.
The Personal Blimp from Skyacht Aircraft made its maiden voyage in late October, and although the company calls it a blimp, it's essentially a steerable hot-air balloon. It utilizes hot air in place of helium and is propelled by electric motors.
Though the cost may seem high for a leisure activity, consider that the average helium airship goes for well over $2 million. Plus, Skyacht is saving owners money in other ways--the blimp deflates and can be stored until next use. Translation: none of those irritating hangar rental fees.
Unfortunately, these won't be for sale until 2008 at least, and plan on having your pilot's license ready, though which class, exactly, is TBD by the FAA.
Also, I'm asking because I don't know: How many hours of flight time are required to drive something that resembles a Nerf football?
(Kudos to Gizmag for pointing to it.)