First published September 24, 2014 in Old Cars Weekly
1950s ELECTRIC FLYING CARS AD – By: M. J. Frumkin
A decade before George Jetson of the 1962 animated TV series started traveling around in his aerocar, America’s Independent Electric Light and Power Companies predicted that future families would commute in personal “flying carpets.”
In this ad from the company, an imaginative illustration captures an airborne car high above the ground as it prepares to land. Mom is at the controls, with daughter and canine pet looking out the aerocar’s clear plastic dome toward their home below. In the circular car port are junior and dad next to a parked flying vehicle.
What’s interesting is how some of the features on the saucer-like conveyances look uncannily like components from our 21st century rides. Note the tiny fin at the rear of the in-flight vehicle that imitates today’s roof-mounted GPS/satellite radio shark fin antenna, and the halogen projector bulb headlights.
Electricity fuels the flying machines, which can be plugged into any power outlet for recharging, perhaps from those solar panels on the roof of the ranch-style home, which would have generated free power.
Another prediction from the ad is how kids’ homework will be made interesting and exciting by being able to visually and audibly connect to a library book, a lecture or a classroom demonstration while at homes via an electric device. Think today’s computer, iPad or iPhone.
Although flying cars are not filling the friendly skies yet, we can still daydream they’re coming, can’t we?