Flying Car Swoops into South Wiltshire UTC Open Evening!

Roads? Where we’re going, we don’t need roads... Those words, uttered by Doc Emmett Brown in the 1985 film Back to the Future, last month captured the imagination of yet another generation of erstwhile adolescents in which flying cars are part of a futuristic landscape, one where traffic jams are a thing of the past. Yet, parents and students visiting the Open Evening at South Wiltshire UTC on 10 November will actually get a glimpse of the ‘fly-drive’ reality when Wiltshire-based engineering company Gilo Industries Group displays its innovative SkyQuad flying car.

The SkyQuad fuses automotive engineering with proven aviation technology to create a new generation of sports recreation vehicle designed for thrill-seekers to step into a future of flight and adventure. The brainchild of British engineer Gilo Cardozo and his team at Dorset-based Gilo Industries Group; the SkyQuad can be transformed from all-terrain vehicle to light sports aircraft in a matter of minutes. With a short take-off and landing capability, open fields, grass strips and secluded beaches are the runways of choice. Using the latest ram-air parafoil wing technology, renowned for its safety, SkyQuad can reach air speeds of 55mph whilst soaring up to a maximum regulated altitude of 10,000 feet. In the unlikely event of engine failure, the SkyQuad simply floats softly to the ground on its paraglider, or a ballistic reserve chute can be deployed.

In the coming weeks a group of South Wiltshire UTC Students will be fortunate enough to visit Gilo Industries Group to meet Gilo and discover how this young engineer turn his boyhood dream into a futuristic reality. The students will learn more about design processes and manufacturing techniques before embarking on a challenge to design and build a working off-road buggy of their own. The project will allow students to start thinking like engineers and understand the real-life applications of engineering. Gilo and his team will visit the group throughout the project to offer advice and of course take the final machines for a thrilling test drive.

“Our partnership with South Wiltshire UTC is a fantastic opportunity to engage and inspire the next generation of innovators and engineers,” explains Gilo Cardozo. “Engineering makes a vital contribution to our economic growth and offers a wealth of varied and rewarding careers. To ensure British engineering continues to thrive we simply have to attract high quality people into the industry. University Technical Colleges such as South Wiltshire are a great way to encourage many more children, particularly girls, into choosing the academic courses, apprenticeships and other vocational pathways that will lead to engineering careers.”

UTC Principal Gordon Aitken said: “Our students are genuinely excited by Science and Engineering and the partnership with Gilo Industries Group is a perfect example of how we link learning to the real world.  Students need to understand the theory of flight and motion and the properties of different materials to pass exams but you can imagine how much deeper their understanding will be when these principles are applied to a flying car.”

The South Wiltshire UTC Open Evening will take place at the newly refurbished former police headquarters site on Wilton Road in Salisbury between 16:00 and 20:00 on 10 November.