5 things you must see at the Goodwood Festival of Speed Future Lab

For the first time, Goodwood FoS has an area dedicated to vehicles of the future, here are five things you must check out

If you're headed to the Goodwood Festival of Speed this weekend make sure you swing by the Future Lab, a hall dedicated to the future of motoring and transportation. 

There's flying cars, self-driving racers, and maybe the next generation of Concorde.

It's a great space if you love cars and technology (which we're guessing you do). So here are five things you simply must check out:

1. Roborace

Taking centre stage in the Future Lab pavilion is the Robocar. It's difficult to miss. Robocar is the world's first driverless race car, and was designed by Daniel Simon, who has previously worked on Tron:Legacy, Oblivion, and Captain America.

The Robocar is currently in development and testing, with two car demonstrations expected to start later in the year. Eventually, we'll see a race series of these cars, with tech and automotive brands fighting it out for the trophy.

If you think driverless race cars are boring, just wait until you see this thing in the metal. It's much larger than you'd expect, and the idea of it speeding down a straight at over 300kph is massively exciting. 

It's has 4 motors 300kW each, 540kW battery, and is predominantly made of carbon fibre. The car uses a number of technologies to ‘drive’ itself including 5 lidars, 2 radars, 18 ultrasonic sensors, 2 optical speed sensors, 6 AI cameras, GNSS positioning and is powered by Nvidia’s Drive PX2 brain. 

It's capable of up to 24 trillion A.I. operations per second, and will be programmed by teams’ software engineers using complex algorithms. All cars will be identical, so the winners and losers will be determined by how well the software is programmed. 

Roborace has announced that the Robocar will climb the legendary Goodwood Hillclimb at next year’s event.

2. Stratasys 3D printing the Goodwood Hill Climb Trophy

3D printing company Stratasys is live printing this weekend's Hillclimb trophy on the world’s only 3D printer capable of multi-part, multi-material printing in one go.

This machine is already used by McLaren F1, and could revolution how cars are designed and made in the future. Stratasys even has a machine which can 3D print metal parts, which, in some cases, are even stronger than their cast equivalents. Some 3D printed parts are being used on the world's first electric passenger jet.

Of course, there are also 3D printed fidget spinners for you to try.

3. Flying cars from PAL-V, VRCO’s NeoXCraft, and Italdesign Airbus

There are three (yes, three!) flying cars on display in the Future Labs, with three very different takes on the concept.

Perhaps the nearest to completion is PAL-V, which is based on a gyrocopter. With PAL-V you drive to an airport, unfold the rotors, then fly to another airport which closer to your destination, hopefully. It could be a great way of skipping a traffic jam on the M25, if you have a pilots licence, this is. 

The next two are slightly more futuristic concepts based on quadcopter designs. 

Italdesign Airbus has brought a concept to Goodwood which you can actually sit inside. The Pop.Up is a modular system for both ground and air transportation. For example, you could be going along the road (silently, as it's electric) then there's an accident in front of you, causing a large traffic jam. The quadcoper would then leave its charging station on top of a nearby building and pick the passenger pod up, taking you to your final destination. It's all fully autonomous, and very conceptual the the moment, but very cool none the less. Expect it on the roads (and in the skies) by 2030.

And finally there's VRCO’s NeoXCraft, which is being developed right here in the UK. Like the Italdesign, it's based on a quadcopter design, but when the NexoXCraft lands, its propellers (or more accurately, the bits protecting the propellers) turn into wheels. 

It's being developed in conjunction with the Institute for Innovation and Sustainable Engineering, Derby University, so there are some intelligent features, such as the aerodynamic design, which is designed to give it lift while in the air, and an emergency parachute system. 

There's no model of it yet, but there is a cool hologram.

4. Racing drone kits from Thrust UAV

Thrust UAV and its parent company PCS Edventures have launched a brand new STEM education programme based around building and flying Thrust’s 100mph racing drones. 

While these certainly won't be able to transport you anywhere, these will help inspire the next generation of children into taking STEM subjects, and eventually, helping make the flying cars, sonic jets, and self driving vehicles a reality.

You can test out your flying skills in the flight simulator, and experience flying a racing drone flat out thanks to a VR headset.

5. Everything else!

 While you're there, you might as well check out everything else the Future Labs has to offer! There's a model of the Boom Supersonic aircraft concept, the world’s first independently developed supersonic passenger jet, and a demonstration of Siemens’ reality modelling technology, developed in conjunction with Maserati.

There's also VR-a-plenty, with Samsung’s Galaxy S8 4D theatre, and you can paint in 3D using the innovative Tiltbrush virtual reality design tool on HTC Vive.

The Goodwood Festival of Speed continues until Sunday, July 2.

Spencer Hart
Style and Travel Editor

As the Style and Travel Editor at T3, Spencer covers everything from clothes to cars and watches to hotels. Everything that's cool, stylish, and interesting, basically. He's been a part of T3 for over seven years, and in that time covered every industry event known to man, from CES and MWC to the Geneva Motorshow and Baselworld. When he's driving up and down the country in search of the greatest driving roads, he can be found messing around on an electric scooter, playing with luxury watches, or testing the latest fragrances.