Former British army officer Neil Laughton is leading a team from London to Timbuktu in a car he claims is the ‘worlds first road-legal bio fuelled flying car’.
The car was designed by Dorset engineer Giles Cardozo in less than two years; it is basically a dune buggy with wings with a giant fan attached to the back. It can take off from 45mph and reach air speeds of 70mph. It can reach heights of up to 15,000 feet. Mr Cardozo will join Mr Laughton as co-pilot for the African leg of the trip.
The team plan to soar over the Pyrenees, before taking to the skies again to hop across the 9-mile (14-km) Straits of Gibraltar, then the Atlas Mountains in Morocco, facing freezing winds as low as -30 degrees C, stretches of the Sahara desert which will mean temperatures of up to 50 degrees C, and on to Timbuktu in Mali. Mr Laughton had also hoped to make the 22-mile (35km) flight across the English Channel, but he said that plan was vetoed by civil aviation officials.