Lexus Gives Skateboarders And 'Back to the Future' Fans A Crack At Its Amazing Hoverboard Prototype
Lexus first gave us a glimpse at its hoverboard prototype back in June and it definitely piqued our interests. For those of us that grew up watching 80’s flicks like Back to the Future Part II, the Lexus hoverboard was a dream come true — not to mention that it came from an unlikely source: a Japanese luxury car maker.
Just when the initial hype of the hoverboard was starting to die down, Lexus is back in the headlines today with the release of two new videos that showcase the superconducting hoverboard. Lexus worked together with top scientists from IFW Dresden and Evico GmbH to create the hoverboard, which has internal semiconductors that are cooled by liquid nitrogen. The liquid nitrogen brings the internal temperature of the hoverboard down to minus 197 degrees, which explains the white smoke you see billowing out the sides.
But the board is useless without an accompanying magnetic field. That’s where Lexus’ one-off skatepark comes into play. At first glance, it looks like a typical concrete skatepark, but looks can be deceiving. In actuality, the skatepark is constructed of wood, which has been painted to look like cement. Embedded beneath the wood are permanent magnetic strips which allows the hoverboard to glide without ever coming in contact with the surface.
You can see the real behind the scenes stuff that makes the hoverboard possible in the following video:
But the real treat is the two-minute video which shows skateboarders getting their chance to try out the hoverboard, performing various stunts and falling (repeatedly) as they attempt to become accustomed to the levitating board:
In the end, the hoverboard is really nothing more than a promotional stunt from Lexus. A consumer-friendly hoverboard that uses a magnetic track and supercooled magnets is not exactly feasible, or even cost effective. But it sure is cool as hell to look at and we applaud Lexus for making the effort to give us 80’s kids something to gawk over, even if the “Slide” promo seems like a slick advertisement for the 467hp GS F that shows up at the end of the video.