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For sale by owner: 1954 flying Taylor AEROCAR, yours now for only $1.25 million (video)

Joseph Volpe, @jrvolpe
July 11, 2012
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For anyone raised on the retro-futurist notion of flying cars, this literal-minded, nuts-and-bolts incarnation should make for some incredulous swooning. Looking much like a 1950's interpretation of a subcompact that wandered into the wrong alleyway and wound up in a Wright Brothers-sponsored chopshop, the Taylor AEROCAR -- one of five made -- is a very real vestige of American auto engineering's past and, more importantly, it's up for grabs. At $1.25 million, this relic of a bygone era's mainly an exorbitant lure for the deep-pocketed collector, but as a rare curiosity, it's free for all to gawk. It's a hybrid in the truest sense, melding a cozy two-seater with front wheel drive, a Lycoming O-320 4-cylinder engine and a wingspan of 30 feet, all conspiring to get it off the ground at 55mph and up to a cruising speed of 100mph. Should you want to merely take it for a test spin out on the open road and not accidentally take flight, rest assured, those mighty wings can be folded out of the way with relative ease. But that's not why you'd want to part ways with a cool chunk of cash, if you're so inclined. This bit of memorabilia's a make-good for all those broken, scifi promises from once upon a TV time. This was the future -- as ridiculous as it may seem.

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