The most ambitious visions for the future automobile often take to the skies.
Goodyear, for instance, recently unveiled Aero, a concept tire designed to double as a propeller and lift a futuristic car off the ground, carrying it to its destination quickly.
But what if the true future of mobility is more familiar?
Our sister publication, Automotive News, reported recently that one Japanese-based start-up may have a different kind of vision for the future of mobility: The Fomm One.
According to the Automotive News story, Hideo Tsurumaki, CEO of Fomm Corp., told The Times of London, that he designed the car in the aftermath of the 2011 tsunami that killed more than 18,000 people in Japan, including many who were stuck in traffic. His goal, he said, was to design a vehicle for new global climate reality, one that could help to save lives when natural disasters arise.
The London-based newspaper noted that, within the last three months, at least 30 people have died in their cars during typhoons.
The Fomm One, slated to go on sale in Japan next spring, is a semiamphibious four-seater with turbine blades in its wheels that allow it to move 2 mph in water. It has a 100-mile battery range and a top speed on dry roads of 50 mph.
It is expected to cost about $20,300, and the company said it has gotten about 1,600 orders in Thailand, which often experiences widespread flooding.
Fomm Corp, though, is far from the first to envision a vehicle that runs as well in water as it does on dry roads.
In fact, one German car maker did just that, more than 50 years ago.
And President Lyndon B. Johnson could have proved it.