Personal Submarine Becomes Reality

No special training needed

No special training needed  (Credit: Raonhaje)

Forget jetpacks, hoverboards and beer hats -- the ultimate toy has always been something that's obvious, yet up until now, has seemed to be curiously avoided by leisure industry manufacturers -- personal submarines.

First widely used during World War I, submarines have been around for quite a while but these machines were cramped, uncomfortable, and difficult to navigate. Moreover, the vehicles didn't seem suited to personal use, aside from this effort from a Chinese farmer last year.

Then suddenly, in the last two years, there's been a rash of the ultimate escape vehicles hitting the market consumer market, culminating with the debut of Raonhaje's EGO at a boat show in Miami last week.

Unlike the dinky uBoatWorx submersibles and awkward Ocean Pearl, the EGO looks like what a proper undersea exploration lab should look like while doubling as a personal mobile island.

Its electric battery can provide you with anywhere between 4 and 10 hours of power, depending on your cruising speed.

Easy to drive? It has a steering wheel and an accelerator, just like a car. Although the South Korean company that's building the Ego seem a little unsure of the legal requirements.

When asked if a special licence or training is required to drive the EGO, their official answer is: "Not really." Although, "it would be good if you learn a simple basic education before boarding," they add.

The EGO's biggest plus is the three giant windows that form the bubble you and your explorer buddy sit in.

Raonhaje says the windows are made from a "special acrylic" material, 200mm thick and 200 times stronger than glass.

"Damage by water pressure almost does not occur," they claim.

You can probably see by now where this is going...

More than a little worryingly, it comes with a one-year warranty and, according to its website, "is not airtight as submarine".

The EGO will be officially released - in seven colors - in October, and despite the wonky translations, still looks the business, at least until we see an affordable version of the much sexier Orca Sub from SubAviator.

Neither of which come with beer hats.