PAL-V $326k Roadgoing Gyrocopter

Meet George's jet, son...

Is it a bird? Is it a helicopter? Well, the PAL-V is neither really. Nor is it a helicopter. It's a prototype three-wheeled gyrocopter, which offers motorcycle-like road performance, plus two seats, as well as short takeoff and landing capability. Theoretically you could whip yourself up into the wild blue yonder and cruise at 180km/h above the gridlock, with as little as 165 metres of clear road ahead. (You need a little run-up to take off, but less runway to land.)

Key difference between an auto gyro (gyrocopter) and a helicopter? The main rotor isn't powered with an auto gyro. Propulsion comes from a fan/propellor at the rear (neat fold-out jobbie a la Transformers). The main rotor overhead is merely a rotating wing - but like a helicopter it is articulated for directional control purposes.

Additional video below.