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Forget supercars - take a ride in the SUPERCRAFT: 21st century take on hovercraft can be yours for £45,000
By Victoria Woollaston 24 March 2014
Designed by Chicago-based Mercier-Jones, the two-seater Supercraft, illustration pictured, costs $75,000 (£45,500) and is due to go on sale in May. It currently has a top speed of 80mph (128 km/h) on land and 40mph (64km/h) on water. It is powered by a hybrid engine and features two thruster blades on the side, pictured
The Supercraft, pictured, can travel over land and water and combines materials and features from the marine, car and aerospace industries. For example, it is made of carbon fibre and has seats inspired by those seen on Formula 1 cars. It also has side decks similar to those on a boat, and an open plane-style cockpit
Ten collector's editions of the Supercraft, illustration pictured, will be available from 15 May, with 50 more units available from October
A petrol engine in the Supercraft, illustration pictured, is used to generate electricity for the two motors of the drive system. A battery pack is used to hold reserve power. The petrol engine is also isolated from the cockpit to reduce noise and pollution levels
Other features of the Supercraft, illustration pictured, include an Android display with Bluetooth and Wi-Fi connectivity plus refrigerated drink wells
Two-seater Supercraft costs $75,000 (£45,500) and goes on sale in May
It is made of carbon fibre with a steel frame and comes with built-in Wi-Fi
10 collector's editions will be available at launch with 50 more units available from October
It has a top speed of 80mph (128 km/h) on land and 40mph (64km/h) water
This modern take on the hovercraft wouldn’t look out of place alongside the likes of the high-tech Batmobile, or James Bond's Lotus Esprit.
Inspired by supercars including the Bugatti Veyron and Audio R8, the Supercraft seats two people, has an Android display, and starts at $75,000 (£45,500).
It can drive on land, including sand and ice, as well as sail on water from lakes, to rivers and even oceans.
THE SUPERCRAFT SPECIFICATIONS
Length: 170in (4.3m)
Width: 85in (2.1m)
Height: 48in (1.2m)
Fuel Capacity: 10 gallons (38 litres)
Top speed: 80mph (128km/h) on land/40mph (64km/h) on water
Hybrid-electric drive train
Carbon fibre body and chromium alloy frame
Android display with Bluetooth and Wi-Fi connectivity
Refrigerated drink wells
Customised wood trim packages including teak, walnut and mapl.
The hovercraft was designed by Chicago-based company Mercier-Jones and is due to go on sale in May.
The Supercraft combines materials and features from the marine, car and aerospace industries.
For example, it is made of carbon fibre and has seats inspired by those seen on Formula 1 cars.
It also has side decks similar to those on a boat, and an open plane-style cockpit.
The craft is described as being easier to handle and manoeuvre than traditional hovercraft, and is a quieter.
It also takes advantage of thrust ports on the side, designed to boost speed.
The Supercraft currently has a top speed of 80mph (128 km/h) on land, and 40mph (64km/h) on water.
However, Mercier-Jones is hoping to beat the hovercraft land-speed record of 56.25mph (90 km/h) during tests this summer, and is also aiming to beat the water-speed record of 86.5 mph (139km/h).
A petrol engine is used to generate electricity for the two independent electric motors of the drive system.
A separate battery pack is used to hold reserve power that can be applied to these motors for quick boosts in performance and thrust.
The petrol engine is also isolated from the cockpit to reduce noise and pollution levels.
Ten collector's edition will be available from 15 May, with 50 more units manufactured in October.
A Mercier-Jones spokesman said: 'Supercraft is the world's first luxury high-performance hovercraft.
‘Agile, fast, easy to pilot, the 2015 Supercraft is an advanced amphibious vehicle with style certain to draw attention.
'Mercier-Jones has patent pending technology in its revolutionary propulsion system and hybrid drive train, making the Supercraft the most innovative hand built hovercraft ever manufactured.’
[© Associated Newspapers]
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