I Believe I can fly
Ever dreamed of flying, no, that’s not quite what I mean so need to rephrase the question; have you ever dreamed you could fly like a plane, well, BMW have made your dream come true.
The famous German brand has manufactured the world’s first electrified wingsuit, test-driving it on sports pioneer Peter Salzmann, sending him soaring through the sky at speeds of up to 186 mph.
The innovative concept was a joint effort between BMW, Designwork and Salzmann with the professional skydiver and BASE jumper saying the idea arose while he was thinking of ways to improve performance in the air.
“One of them was a supporting motor, an idea I just couldn’t shake,” Salzmann, told BMW “I found the idea of being able to jump from my local mountain wearing the wingsuit and land in my garden fascinating.”
After three years of intensive research and countless test flights in BMW’s horizontal wind tunnel, Salzmann and the wingsuit completed the maiden flight over the picturesque mountains of Austria last week.
Powered by a chest-mounted rig and built on BMW I EV technology the wingsuit offers 15 kW of grunt that is split between two 7.5 kW carbon impellers.
The impellers spin at a speed of 25,000 rpm and produce thrust for up to five minutes. The aim of the electric wingsuit is to increase performance and eventually allow longer distances to be covered.
In the video of the feat, the trio glide in tandem before Salzmann uses his kilowattage to boost above another mountain and actually manages to gain altitude while the other pilots descend.
Like a real-life Iron Man, all three then deploy parachutes and land safely.
The wingsuit exhibited as part of BMW’s #NEXTGEN 2020 event # with the automaker offering a unique look ahead to the future of mobility.
BMW intends to showcase an array of new tech and reveal the new iNext electric crossover.
According to BMW, the daredevil wants to fly between the skyscrapers of South Korea next.
“I will have to train more,” the Austrian adds. “We will optimize the technique and look ahead boldly.”