The History of Neoteric Hovercraft

In 1959, Chris Fitzgerald, the founder of Neoteric Hovercraft, Inc., happened to view a television program about the British Saunders Roe Nautical Model One (SRN1) crossing the English Channel. He was 15 years old, living in Melbourne, Australia, and this program sparked in Fitzgerald a dream that would become his life's work: to invent a smaller version of the hovercraft and market it to the world.

Today, Neoteric Hovercraft, Inc. is the world’s original and most experienced light hovercraft manufacturer, with clientele in 50 nations, and Neoteric light hovercraft are recognized as the industry standard for rescue, commercial and recreational hovercraft.

We share with you the detailed history, with photographs, of how a young man’s dream evolved into a global industry…

The genesis of Neoteric Hovercraft, Inc. occurred in July 1959 when the company's founder, Chris Fitzgerald, viewed a television program about the British Saunders Roe Nautical Model One (SRN1) Hovercraft crossing the English Channel. He was inspired by the prospect of being able to fly safely, albeit close to the ground, without having to be immensely rich like an aviator. Even though Chris was only 15 years old at the time, he began pondering the idea of inventing a smaller version of hovercraft, and marketing it to the world for a vast number of applications ranging from recreation to rescue.

At the time of the SRN1's crossing, Chris' father, Gerald, and his two uncles Bill and Jack were the Fitzgeralds' third generation to own and run the family sheet metal business, which started when the family arrived in Australia from Ireland during the 1850s Ballarat Gold Rush in Victoria. They supplied billys, buckets, pans, funnels, and many other sheet metal items needed on the gold field. When the gold source was eventually depleted, the Fitzgeralds moved to Melbourne where they started W. Fitzgerald and Sons in a half basement on Elizabeth Street, causing them to be known as the "Underground Tinsmiths". By the time of World War I, the family had become so prosperous that they had to expand to two locations, one at the Haymarket in a building that still stands in the alley-way behind the Melbourne Motor Inn, and one on Swanston Street that later became Melbourne University's Child Minding Center. In 1972, W. Fitzgerald and Sons was sold to a private individual.

The Fitzgerald independent spirit so influenced Chris that in 1956, when he was 12 years old, he was already in the business of creating and selling model aircraft. At age 14 he joined the Royal Australian Air Force Air Training Corps and, at the same time, became the youngest member of the Australian Experimental Aircraft Association (then known as the Ultralight Aircraft Association of Australia), seeing both affiliations as an introduction to the world of flight. When, at age 15, he started working on his own hovercraft designs, Chris attracted the interest of the Aeronautical Research Laboratories in Melbourne and they soon employed him as a technical assistant. Work was done on various hovercraft projects such as crevasse jumping and ejector driven recirculation annular jets. During this time, Chris served as a Technical Assistant to Dr. David Warren, who was then developing the world's first "Black Box" flight recorder. (Early boxes were not black, but bright orange.) He was also an assistant to Bill Howard, Dennis Frith, Murdock Culley, Alan Cox, and others.

young chris testing his hovercraft
Measuring over water drag on a statically hovering man-carrying hovercraft. This plenum chamber hovercraft used a 2-cycle 3½ HP lawn mower engine for lift.
hovercraft jumping over gap
Hovercraft experiments conducted at the Aeronautical Research Laboratory in Melbourne included crevasse jumping tests, as Australia had an active interest in Arctic transportation. This experiment consisted of a 60-foot long platform 8 feet wide and 4 feet off the hangar floor. Scale model hovercraft were catapulted along the center and various speeds and crevasse widths were tested. At speed, the model could jump a crevasse of width almost 3/4 the length of the craft. Notice these tests were conducted on models that utilized the annular jet principle, before the days of hovercraft skirts.

In the early 1960s, while in the Royal Australian Air Force Air Training Corps, Chris found a ready supply of material with which to develop his hovercraft designs, and formed a club/business relationship with several fellow Cadets to help expedite his goal of creating a functional, personal-sized hovercraft. Together, Chris, Robert Wilson, Peter Kolf, and Alan Schwartz, as well as other members from outside the Air Training Corps — Eddy Thomas, Arthur Boyd, Bernard Sutcher, Laurie Fair and Sam Ciliauro - established the Hovercraft Research Organization. Their home base was located in a suburb of Melbourne at the Brunswick Boys’ Club, and the partners operated a Jazz Club to raise funds for their hovercraft research.

As an interesting side note, during this time they hired a new band, known as The Seekers, to perform at the Jazz Club. The very next week, The Seekers were called to England to perform the title song of the 1966 British film Georgy Girl, starring Lynn Redgrave. The title song became a hit single and was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Original Song. The Seekers were the first Australian popular music group to achieve significant chart and sales success in the United Kingdom and the United States.

In the mid-1960s, the Hovercraft Research Organization changed its name to Australian Air Cushion Vehicles Development. More than 50 Melbourne businesses agreed to donate materials to aid the group in the building of an experimental man-carrying model. Considered an extracurricular activity at the Air training Corps, the Cadet members worked after hours at the facility, and then at various backyard sheds and garages, crafting many different models and test rigs. Most valuable to the project at this time was Robert Wilson, who is still involved today with design and product development at Neoteric Hovercraft, Inc. David Atkins, who was introduced to the team by Arthur Boyd, is still the company’s aesthetic and ergonomic design engineer. Other members have gone on to such professions as Qantas Performance Engineer, Royal Australian Navy Engineer, Professor of Naval Architecture, General Motors Australia Design Engineer and Pfizer Australia Marketing Manager.

Construction of the hovercraft that introduced practical engineering design concepts took place at Melbourne University’s Mechanical Engineering School from 1962 to 1964; this craft was entered in the World’s First Hovercraft Race on March 14, 1964 in Canberra, Australia. Much to the chagrin of the University’s Chancellor, it made its first run on his back lawn during the early part of 1964. After participating in the first race, the group moved into W. Fitzgerald & Sons factory on Swanston Street in Melbourne, where development continued.

By 1968 Chris had left Aeronautical Research Laboratories and joined the family business along with Robert Wilson. Involvement at W. Fitzgerald & Sons lasted until 1969 when Robert Wilson resumed his engineering education and Chris Fitzgerald won a Rotary Club scholarship to study aeronautical engineering in the UK at the Farnborough Technical School and to work as an intern at British Hovercraft Corporation (formerly Saunders Roe), and then to travel the world to survey the latest in hovercraft technology.

In 1973, Australian Air Cushion Vehicles Development was renamed and incorporated as Neoteric Engineering Affiliates Pty Ltd. In 1975, Chris moved to the United States and incorporated Neoteric, Inc. in Indiana. It also traded as Neoteric USA Inc. and much later became Neoteric Hovercraft, Inc.

A Photo History of Neoteric Hovercraft, 1960-1969

1960 - present From 1960 on, Neoteric Hovercraft, Inc. has collected hovercraft related publications, technical publications, photographs, 8mm and 16 mm early movies, videos and an extensive library of supplier’s catalogs.  These libraries are constantly being cataloged.  The 35 mm slide library has been cataloged and contains several thousand items.  The goal is to eventually publish and/or to display them on the Neoteric website.

Early Hovercraft Publicity

Early Hovercraft Publicity
The Sun, Melbourne, Australia                             

Early Hovercraft Development
Early Hovercraft Development
Australian Air Cushion Vehicles Development Craft #5 (AACVD5)
1961 - present In 1961 Neoteric Australia began to provide technical services, prototype components and occasional manufactured parts and to undertake experimental testing and model building.  The company continues at present to operate its testing facility at Hastings, Victoria, Australia.
1961 - 1973 Research, development and experimentation were conducted: reverse thrust was developed and tested; trials were undertaken and models constructed along with test rigs and full size hovercraft such as AACVD 5 (cannibalized in 1973). Some of the persons who assisted during this time were Dr. Laurence Doctors, James McCreedy and Bill Burke.

Early Honors, 1962
Early Honors, 1962
The Age newspaper, 23 June 1962

World's First Hovercraft Race Entry
Early Hovercraft Development
The Age Newspaper, 13 March 1964
  Air Cushion Vehicle, 1966
Air Cushion Vehicle, 1966
Gascor News, June-July 1966
First Hovercraft Trials, 1966
First Hovercraft Trials, 1966
The Colac Herald, Monday 11 July 1966
14 March, 1964 Chris Fitzgerald, Rob Wilson, Eddy Thomas and Ron Davies participated in the world's first hovercraft race in Canberra, Australia, as Australian Air Cushion Vehicles Development.
1968 - 1971 A hangar/shed was constructed on land purchased along the Hastings seashore, Victoria, Australia.
1969 - 1970 Chris surveyed world hovercraft developments under the sponsorship of Rotary International.

The History of the AACVD5 - 1963-1972
by Rob Wilson, President, Neoteric Engineering Affiliates, Pty. Ltd; Australia; Technical Director, Neoteric Hovercraft, Inc.


AACVD5 was the first full sized man carrying hovercraft constructed by Neoteric, then known as Australian Air Cushion Vehicles Development. Many models and test rigs had been made and run in the years dating back to 1960, so a significant knowledge of the air cushion principle was available before AACVD5 was built. However, little was known about the construction of a full sized craft with its complex and inherent engine, transmission and operational environment problems - and nothing was known about flexible skirts. The learning curve was very steep with many mistakes being made. It has been estimated that for every hour of the machine’s recorded total of 91 hours and 16 minutes of lift engine running time, 218 hours of construction, repair, modification and maintenance was required. That’s nearly 20,000 hours of labour or about 2,000 hours per year over the life of the craft - not a minor effort for a small group of part timers. Here is how it progressed over the years:

July, 1963 The first run of the AACVD5 was completed, in its original configuration of 12 foot diameter circular plan-form with annular air jets. Four segmental sections in the air jets actuated by a cockpit control stick enabled selective restriction of jet discharge area and hence tilted the craft to give forward, reverse or side force for low speed manoeuvring. A 3 foot diameter, centrally mounted, cast aluminum axial fan was driven by a 350cc BSA single cylinder motorcycle engine with gearbox and single chain via a 90 degree bevel gearbox. No additional propulsion system was fitted. Fig 1 through 5 show the original construction.
  Fig 1: General layout, base, and upper
duct frame.

Fig 1: General layout of base and upper duct frame. Gearbox mount, cockpit moulding, hydraulics and jet pieces are in position ready for application of foam.
Gearbox mount, cockpit moulding, hydraulics and jet pieces in position and ready for application of foam
Fig. 2: Upper duct frame

Fig. 2: Upper duct frame
Fig. 3: A lower upper duct frame support
Fig. 3: A lower upper duct frame support

Fig. 4: Top of base
Fig. 4: Top of base
Top of base showing air holes and uneven density of foam
Fig. 5: Bottom of base
Fig. 5: Bottom of base
Bottom of base showing shrinkage of foam between ribs
March, 1964 The AACVD5 was transported by road to Canberra for the World’s First Hovercraft Race. A 40hp outboard motor was fitted at the stern and a steerable/retractable water fin fitted to the bow. Fig 6 shows the cockpit layout and Fig 7 the outboard installation at that time. Numerous mechanical problems with the chain drive design limited running time to minutes between breakdowns. Fundamental trim problems negated the powerful thrust available from the outboard engine and the hovercraft was withdrawn from competition at an early stage.
  Fig 6: Original cockpit layout
Fig 6: Original cockpit layout
Outboard storage unit and flap control hydraulics are fitted.
Fig. 7: First outboard installation
Fig. 7: First outboard installation
September, 1964 A more powerful 500cc Triumph 5T motorcycle engine was fitted to drive the lift fan (Fig 8). No motorcycle gearbox or clutch was used and the chain drive was directly coupled to the fan right angle gearbox via a countershaft to give the necessary speed reduction and to reduce the center distance of the chain drive. A one-way overrunning clutch installed on the countershaft and chain-coupled to an aircraft starter motor provided electric starting. Due to the high fan inertia and direct drive, shock loads were high and numerous shaft failures occurred. The overrunning clutch on the starter drive was totally inadequate for the duty involved and soon burned out. After several transmission rebuilds and modifications, extending over many months, a reliable arrangement using a centrifugal clutch to decouple the fan and a saw-tooth clutch with a centrifugal weight release mechanism to disengage the starter was developed. Fig 9 shows this arrangement.
  Fig. 8: Second lift engine installation
Fig. 8: Second lift engine installation
Outboard storage unit and flap control hydraulics are fitted.
Fig. 9a: Transmission installation
Fig. 9a: Transmission installation
Transmission installation showing mounts, right angle drive gearbox and vacuum pump.
Fig. 9b: Fifth gearbox shaft
Fig. 9b: Fifth gearbox shaft
From left: Centrifugal clutch, gearbox drive sprocket, starter motor dog clutch, starter sprocket & bearing
November, 1964 The first flexible skirt was fitted. Given that the AACVD5 was a circular plan-form hovercraft, the skirt shape was conical, six inches deep and fitted to the outer air jet wall only. To avoid the anticipated snagging on obstacles due to the 45 degree skirt angle, elastic panels were built into the fabric. The air jet flaps, shown to be effective in tilting the craft in its original configuration, were retained but proved to be completely ineffective with a skirt fitted to the outer jet wall. Worst of all, the stretchable panels resulted in skirt flutter and severe craft vibrations.
December, 1964 In an effort to make the air jet controls effective, a second skirt was fitted to the inner jet wall. The stretchable panels on the outer skirt were mostly replaced. Unfortunately, the air jet controls were still ineffective and the inner skirt unstable, often sticking to the outer skirt, blocking airflow and causing loss of lift on that side of the craft.
January, 1965 Since the elastic panel method of providing stretchability had been unsuccessful, a partially stretchable material for the outer skirt was tried. Since the elastic panel method of providing stretchability had been unsuccessful, a partially stretchable material for the outer skirt was tried.
February, 1965 In an attempt to develop water screw propulsion, it was decided to replace the heavy 180 pound, 40 horsepower outboard motor with a much lighter 18 horsepower outboard weighing 80 pounds. A new single 45 degree conical skirt with minimal stretchability and good abrasion resistance was installed, along with a reinforced higher cable travel lifting system. Simple flap type stability skirts were also fitted laterally and longitudinally. This layout is shown in Fig 10 and Fig 11. Water testing at Lake Eppalock showed that the relatively high thrust moments generated by the outboard propulsor could mot be matched by the much lower stabilizing moments generated by the circular air cushion. A trim balance between bow-in plough and stern scooping was impossible to maintain.
Fig. 10: Second outboard installation
Fig. 10: Second outboard installation
Fig. 11a: Fourth flexible skirt
Fig. 11a: Fourth flexible skirt
Fig. 11b: Close-up
Fig. 11b: Close-up
Stability members on fourth flexible skirt
September, 1965 The original BSA lift engine was set up on a steel tubing frame to turn a 6 foot diameter wooden light aircraft propeller via a chain reduction drive. This propulsion unit was fitted to the craft and some thrust measurements recorded. The installation was unreliable but the basic concept of airscrew propulsion was shown to be viable.
January, 1966

A 1200cc Volkswagen industrial engine was obtained and set up on a tubing frame as a pusher propulsion unit using the same propeller as that used in the BSA engine test. Direct chain drive was employed and weight minimized by discarding the VW flywheel, cooling system, generator and starter. Starting was by hand swinging the propeller and a magneto ignition system eliminated the need for a battery. Fig 12 shows detail of this installation. The assembly was strapped to the craft, enabling easy removal for road transportation.

A large fin, operated by a foot-actuated hydraulic system, was fitted behind the propeller. To minimize the effects of plough-in and water spray, a triangular bow was made from steel tubing and covered with plywood, extending the craft length by 3 feet. A cabin with adequate headroom and a windscreen wiper/washer system was added.

Because of the bow extension a new skirt was fitted. Initially this skirt was the same conical design as previously, except for straight sections along the bow. The skirt lifting cables were replaced by chains enclosed in tubes; skirt lift was subsequently proved to be largely ineffective and this system was abandoned. The straight skirt bow sections blew out and were replaced by convoluted fingers. It was found that the extra cushion lift generated by the bow section produced excessive bow-up trim; this was alleviated by restricting the air flow to this section via calibrated holes in the conical front section of the main skirt. Fig 13 shows the bow section of this installation.

  Fig. 12a and 12b: Detail of propulsion unit airscrew drive
  Fig. 12a: Detail of propulsion unit airscrew drive Fig. 12b: Detail of propulsion unit airscrew drive
  Fig. 13: Convoluted bow section of fifth flexible skirt
Fig. 13: Convoluted bow section of fifth flexible skirt
February, 1966 Trials in a salt water swamp at Point Cook proved the viability of the propulsion, skirt and control systems. These trials also introduced the crew to accelerated corrosion conditions inherent in salt water operations.
March, 1966 A public demonstration at Devonport, Tasmania (Fig. 14) provided experience in salt water with ocean swell conditions. A demonstration of how dangerous chain drives can be when they come apart and become entangled in a propeller was a none-too-subtle reminder of the potential for unfortunate accidents.
  Fig. 14
Fig. 14
April, 1966 A further public demonstration at Moorabbin Airport showed the effectiveness of the craft operating on the unprepared verges of runways.
July, 1966 Trials over a farmer's unprepared grass field and adjoining Lake Colac showed the advantages of a relatively large lift air supply and ample thrust in rough conditions. Also demonstrated was the need to allow for adequate stopping distances when no reverse thrust is available and skidding on wet grass is the only means of braking.
February, 1967 Trials at Bacchus Marsh on a standby airstrip presented the opportunity to determine the top speed potential of the AACVD5 on dry flat ground. Instrumentation installed included a calibrated anemometer and aircraft type data recorder. On long flat gravel runways and verges, speeds up to 55 feet per second (38 mph) were measured. Fig 15 is a photograph taken at this time. At the end of this trials period the first deep skirt was fitted (Fig 16). Because of the trim implications of the extended bow section, a balancing cushion area at the stern was provided by squaring off the stern with tubing covered with fabric. The design was a basic 'C-skirt' configuration with supporting fabric diaphragms fastened back to the base structure. Although the 2 foot ground clearance obtained was impressive, stability was very poor and the craft unusable in that state.
  Fig. 15
Fig. 15
  Fig. 16a: Fitting the fifth flexible skirt
Fig. 16a: Fitting the fifth flexible skirt
Fig. 16b: Two foot high air cushion
Fig. 16b: Two foot high air cushion
Equipped with a two foot high air cushion, the craft was controlled via a large rudder and a bow-mounted McCulloch drone motor thruster. The rear thruster is a 1200cc VW engine.
September, 1968 To obtain a more stable cushion, the bow was rounded off via a tubular structure bent in a semi-circle and braced back to the existing bow structure. The side and rear sections of the 'C-skirt' were pressurized by adding an inner wall, this being attached to the diaphragms. The top edge of this wall was left open to allow passage of air into the cushion.
October, 1968 Trials were held at Lake Modewarre to check the performance of the 2 foot deep skirts. Over obstacle performance of the craft was found to be improved with the increased cushion depth, but drag was higher and manoeuvrability much impaired.
November, 1968 A bag-type longitudinal stability skirt was fitted with inflation from the plenum near the fan. A bow thruster unit using a 2-cycle, 2 cylinder McCulloch drone engine, driving a small propeller and mounted on a rotatable pylon, was fitted to aid manoeuvrability. The craft was transported by road to the first Australian Hovercraft Conference at Adelaide and demonstrated over beach and shallow water. A massive skirt tuck-under and plough-in ended the demonstration. Fig 17 was photographed at that event. The bow thruster was found to be effective when operational but extreme engine unreliability limited its use to a few very brief tests.
  Fig. 17a: Australian Hovercraft Conference
Fig. 17a: Australian Hovercraft Conference
The AACVD5 makes its second public appearance in 1968 at the 1st Australian Hovercraft Conference, sponsored by the South Australian Branch of the Royal
Aeronautical Society.
Fig. 17b: The accident
Fig. 17b: The accident
Peter Crew, Head Mathematician from the British Hovercraft Corporation in the UK, witnessed the accident that befell the AACVD5 and explained it as a classic skirt tuck-under and plough in. The craft suffered damage andwas helped ashore by an enthusiastic public.
February, 1971 A complete skirt rebuild was undertaken. The temporary tubular bow and stern sections were removed and replaced. A conventional circular bow section with 45 degree planing sides and thick square stern sections with buoyant foam fill were fitted. The ‘C-skirt’ was trimmed and enclosed along the bottom with a small bag skirt, cushion flow being via a gap between the inner wall of the skirt at the top and the base structure. The bow section of the skirt was also enclosed with bag at the bottom as for the side and stern sections. Several adjustments were made to the venting arrangement until the bag-to-cushion pressure ratio was in the range 1.1 to 1.2. Lateral conical type stability skirts were also added to complement the constrained bag type longitudinal stability skirt. Fig 18 shows the appearance of this final skirt configuration.
  Fig. 18: AACVD5 hovercraft testing
Fig. 18: AACVD5 hovercraft testing
Toward the end of its life, the AACVD5 hovercraft could carry 3 persons and had a 2-foot hover height.
Mar. 1971 - Apr., 1972 The AACVD5 was operated intermittently on coastal salt mud flats. The deep skirts were found to be very effective in negotiating the relatively deep mud ditches in the area at low tide, although care had to be taken to enter such depressions with sufficient momentum to climb up the exiting ditch wall. Drag was much higher than that experienced with the early conical and segment skirts and hump almost impossible to negotiate from a standing start. The craft was employed to transport personnel and equipment to an offshore island test site used for early Neova 1 testing. The ability to carry 3 people, or the equivalent weight in equipment, was very useful during this period. Some months later the AACVD5 was cannibalized and the remaining structure disposed of by burning.

The 1970s were a decade of significant change for the emerging Neoteric Hovercraft, Inc., including the move of its headquarters from Australia to the USA in 1975. Australian Air Cushion Vehicles Development evolved into Neoteric Engineering Affiliates Pty. Ltd, incorporated in Australia, with Rob Wilson serving as president of Neoteric’s Australia division.

The company’s first comprehensive business plan was developed and marketing efforts were begun in earnest. Neoteric’s first major magazine feature appeared in Popular Mechanics, followed by more than 120 articles in publications across the world. In addition, Chris Fitzgerald incorporated the Hovercraft Club of America, Inc. and expanded its membership to more than 700. Fitzgerald also created and served as editor of Hovernews, the Hovercraft Club of America newsletter. Both the Club and the newsletter continue to thrive today.

Laying a solid foundation for its future growth, Neoteric designed and patented new technology worldwide and, in addition, developed hovercraft kits for home builders and marketed the kits worldwide.

A Photo History of Neoteric Hovercraft, 1970-1979

1971 – present AACVD8, also known as the Neova 1, was designed, tested and developed, then shipped to the United States in 1976.� The craft was then used for development, promotion and for competition in American hoverclub events.� It was placed in storage in 1986; refurbishing began in 2001.
Slope stability Hovercraft history photo
History Neoteric Hovercraft testing
A special test rig was designed to study the hovercraft's ability to lift off when on slopes. The craft's center of gravity could be raised along with the slope gradient.
Neoteric's test facility in Hastings, Victoria, Australia, located by the sea. In this photo, the 60-ft diameter circular test tank is filled with seawater; 50% of the track is land and 50% is water. An exact 1/3 scale model of the Neova 1 hovercraft, powered by two 220 V, 7 Amp AC electric motors, was used to test max speed, hump performance, and performance in various sea conditions as scaled waves can be generated. The payload and center of gravity of the model were adjustable. The model was equipped with a full and independent electrically controlled reverse thrust system.
Early hovercraft testing
Fans Hovercraft history photo
In this photo, an 8-cylinder Cadillac engine drove multiple axial flow fans with twin bands of stator blades. The device at the end of the duct was a new form of thrust reverser.
This photo shows the VW-powered thrust and lift machinery module developed for the Neova 1 model.
History Hovercraft skirt testing
Neova 1 Hovercraft history photo
This upside-down test rig was used to evaluate the performance of various skirt systems. It was also used for stability testing under all load conditions.
1973 – 1977 Neova technology and patents were marketed.
Neoteric Hovercraft History
World's First Hovercraft Race
Left to right: Bernard Sutcher, Sam Ciliauro, Arthur Boyd, Rob Wilson, Laurie Fair
Left to Right: Arthur Boyd, Bernard Sutcher, Rob Wilson, Sam Ciliauro, Laurie Fair
1973 – 2001 Blueprints for building the Neova 1 and Neova 2 were developed and marketed worldwide.� Income from these sales supported the company during the early years.
1973 Australian Air Cushion Vehicles Development was discontinued and Neoteric Engineering Affiliates Pty. Ltd. was incorporated in Australia.
1973 – 2001 Publicity and promotions to improve the corporate image were implemented.� The company's first major Popular Mechanics magazine article appeared in 1977.� More than 120 articles followed in newspapers and magazines worldwide.�
1974 Patent applications were awarded to Neoteric in many countries. The corporate logo was designed and trademarked.
July, 1974 The first Neoteric publicity occurred in Melbourne�newspapers and in other Australian media.
World's first Sports hovercraft photo
Neova hovercraft on Yarra River
The Herald, Melbourne, Australia 3 July 1974
Victoria, Australia Jan/Feb 1975
Hovercraft history Society of Automotive Engineers SAE
Neova Hovercraft rice farming
SAE Australasia, March/April 1975
The Weekly Times, Melbourne, 14 May 1975
Air cushion vehicle Australian Trading News
Home built hovercraft Australian Seacraft
Australian Trading News, July 1975
Australian Seacraft Power & Sail, July 1975
Air cushion vehicle photo Australian Trading News
History Hovercraft manufacturing industry
Australian Trading News, July 1975
The Age, 29 July 1975
Neova I hovercraft testing
Leisure Hovercraft history
Hastings Testing Facility, Melbourne, Australia 1971
Yarra River, Melbourne, Australia
Historic hovercraft Neova 1 picture
Hovercraft fishing boat Neova 1
Neova 1 Hovercraft for duck hunting boat
Fishing Hovercraft picture
1975 The company moved its home office and manufacturing facilities to Terre Haute, Indiana USA and incorporated Neoteric Inc., which also traded as Neoteric USA Inc. This later became Neoteric Hovercraft, Inc.
Neoteric Hovercraft moves to USA
Do-it-yourself hovercraft photo
The Sun, 9 April 1976
Ledger-Star, 27 May 1976
To view a comprehensive list of additional worldwide publicity about the Neova from 1974-1977, click here.
1975 – 1988 Neoteric USA began operations in the Fort Harrison Industrial Park warehouse in Terre Haute, Indiana USA, leased to them by the Eldred family, who played an important role in the early days of Neoteric's progress.
1976 – 1978 The John Talmage family from Long Island, New York, placed an order for the first Neova 2 hovercraft, giving Neoteric its real start in the USA. Neoteric then undertook the design, development, and manufacture of the first side-by-side seat Neova 2. Neoteric provided hovercraft pilot training to John Talmage when he took delivery of the craft in 1977. This first unit was used to develop the Neova 2 kit and to garner publicity.
Neova 2 Hovercraft history
Neova 2 Hovercraft picture
The Neova 2 in action
The original Neova 2 was constructed of wood and fiberglass.
Neova 2 fiberglass hovercraft
The all-fiberglass Neova 2 debuted in 1982.
1976 – 2001 Chris Fitzgerald incorporated the Hovercraft Club of America, Inc., produced its newsletter, Hovernews, and expanded the club's membership to 700. See History of the Hovercraft Club of America, Inc.
1977 Neoteric's first comprehensive business plan was developed.
1977 – 1986 Neoteric developed kits for home construction of the Neova 2 hovercraft and marketed them worldwide.

The 1980s established Neoteric as a global entity, as it solidified business relationships across the world and attracted customers from India, China, Japan and numerous other nations. Other customers included large corporations such as Alcoa Aluminum and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.

Intensive research and development efforts produced several new Neoteric models: The LeMere, later named the Explorer; the Racer, later named the Questrek; and the Neova. From 1984 to 1997, Neoteric sold more than 300 Racer and Questrek models.

The publicity the company received in the 1980s continued to be international in scope. Neoteric hovercraft appeared in three major commercial productions: for Labatts Beer, Canada; for Lord Extra Cigarettes, Germany; and for Hollywood Cigarettes, Brazil. In addition, Neoteric created 15 hovercraft dragons for Disney World in Orlando, Florida. In the late 1980s, Neoteric was instrumental in bringing the World Hovercraft Championship to the USA, and Chris Fitzgerald became a founding member of the World Hovercraft Federation.

During this decade, Chris Fitzgerald was appointed the first Entrepreneur in Residence at Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology, the leading engineering college in the USA for eight consecutive years. Neoteric’s solid relationship with Rose-Hulman has flourished for nearly 30 years.

In 1988, Neoteric’s USA headquarters relocated to a new larger facility, where it continues to operate today.

A Photo History of Neoteric Hovercraft, 1980-1989

1980 – 1987 The LeMere, later named the Explorer, was designed, developed, manufactured and marketed.
LeMere Hovercraft advertising Germany
Explorer Hovercraft history
The LeMere appeared in Lord Extra Cigarette advertising in the German market.
This craft was used by the US Army Corps of Engineers to conduct a water temperature study at the Lake Oahe Dam in Pierre, South Dakota.
1981 – 1984 Neoteric participated in three major commercial productions in California; the first at Lake Isabella for Labatts Beer, Canada; the second at Lake Big Bear for Lord Extra Cigarettes, Germany; and the third at Lake Isabella for Hollywood Cigarettes, Brazil.
1981 – 1984 A corporate advisory board of volunteer directors was established in Terre Haute, Indiana USA.
1982 – 1984 An evaluator program for improving the Explorer (formally the LeMere) model was begun.
1982 – present A business relationship was established with Mr. B. N. Sinha, President of the Scientific Instrument Company (SICO), in India.
1982 – 1983 On separate occasions both Chris Fitzgerald and Robert Wilson traveled to India to set up hovercraft manufacturing at SICO.
1983 U.D. Mishra, SICO Manager, was sent to Neoteric's headquarters in Terre Haute, Indiana USA to learn hovercraft construction.
1983 – present Chris Fitzgerald was appointed Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology's first ever Entrepreneur in Residence, establishing a long, solid relationship between Neoteric and Rose-Hulman.� Many Rose-Hulman students still find employment at Neoteric today and are involved in internships and special engineering projects
1984 The Racer, later named the Questrek, was designed and developed.
Hovercraft history Neoteric Racer
Hovercraft history Neoteric Racer
This machine was a shortened version of the production Neoteric Racer & Questrek. It participated in the World Hovercraft Championship in Troy, Ohio in 1989 and won numerous awards. A later version utilized recumbent seating.
1984 – 1987 Parts were supplied to Neoteric by SICO India.
1984 – 1987 Neoteric supplied and supported 15 hovercraft dragons for Disney World in Orlando Florida, based on the Racer model.� One Explorer model was also supplied.
Disney World hovercraft
Dragon hovercraft Epcot Center
Walt Disney dragon hovercraft
Chris Fitzgerald dragon hovercraft
Mickey Mouse hovercraft Epcot
Mickey arrives at a Florida kindergarten. To the delight of the children, he arrives by a Neoteric Explorer hovercraft driven by Neoteric hover pilot Greg Danner.
1984 – 1997 Neoteric developed, designed, tested, manufactured and sold more than 300 Racer and Questrek models.
Shipping hovercraft Federal Express
Shipping hovercraft air transport
Shipping hovercraft FedEx China
1985 – present The company designed, developed, and produced the prototype Neova 4 at Neoteric Australia and developed blueprints for its home construction.� Plans are still being sold today.
Neova 4 Hovercraft picture
1987 – present Chris Fitzgerald co-authored Light Hovercraft Design Manual, the third edition of which is still sold today through Neoteric and the Hoverclub of America Inc.
1987 – 1989 Neoteric organized and conducted three light hovercraft design conferences at Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology.
1987 – 1990 Neoteric designed a 6-seat 318 V8 Chrysler-powered utility hovercraft for the US Army Corps of Engineers.
1987 – 1990 Racer and Neova 6 hovercraft kits were sold to Japan. Neoteric obtained Japanese Marine Department Certification for the Racer and Neova 6 models.
Neova 6 Neoteric Hovercraft history
Neova 6 Neoteric Hovercraft history
1987 Chris Fitzgerald and present company employee Ralph Weas attended the World Hovercraft Championship in Germany, and became founding members of the World Hovercraft Federation.
1988 Neoteric designed, developed and supplied a 1� ton Hoverlifter to Alcoa Aluminum.
Neoteric Hoverlifter Alcoa Aluminum
Neoteric Hoverlifter Alcoa Aluminum
1988 – 1996 Neoteric designed, developed and manufactured the Neova Workhorse for Southern Illinois University; Onset Fire Department; Golden Sunlight Mines; Dr. Fowler and other customers.
Golden Sunlight mining hovercraft
This Neova Workhorse serves as a rescue hovercraft for the Onset Fire Department, Onset, Massachusetts USA.
This Workhorse was utilized by Golden Sunlight Mine, near Whitehall, Montana USA.
A 7-passenger twin engine Workhorse used as a recreational hovercraft by Dr. Fowler.
June, 1988 Neoteric's USA headquarters relocated to a new larger facility, centrally located in Terre Haute, Indiana USA.
1989 Neoteric and Chris Fitzgerald, in conjunction with the Hoverclub of America, Inc., organized the 1989 World Hovercraft Championship in Troy, Ohio USA.
Aug 1989 – 1990 Neoteric designed and developed a series of hovering billiard balls for the popular US comedian, Gallagher, "Wizard of Odd".
1989 – 2001 A shortened Questrek for racing, named Racer, was designed, developed and manufactured. The new Racer then participated in the October 1989 World Hovercraft Championship and in many future Hoverclub of America, Inc. racing events.

The company’s global growth continued during the 1990s, during which Neoteric expanded its customer support systems. New instructional literature was produced, as well as a 3 hour assembly video to assist customers who purchased partially-assembled models. A full relational database manufacturing software computer program was established to better manage the company’s increasing growth, and plans for a web site were begun.

While Neoteric produced several unique designs, including a 5000-lb Hoverlifter for use in cranberry farming, and a series of hovering billiard balls for a popular US comedian, the company’s primary focus centered on developing tooling and manufacturing systems for its Hovertrek 4 passenger hovercraft in three separate variants for rescue, commercial and recreational applications.

An earlier model Questrek was used to perform several hovercraft water rescues in Terre Haute, Indiana USA during flooding, paving the way for the recognition of Neoteric hovercraft as the industry standard for rescue hovercraft.

A Photo History of Neoteric Hovercraft, 1990-1999

1990 A hover platform was designed, developed and constructed for California Polytechnic State University, to be entered in a National Robotics Competition, in which it took second place.
1991 A prototype model, then a full scale 5000-lb. Hoverlifter, was designed and developed for placing sand atop a cranberry farm in Buzzard's Bay, Massachusetts.� This machine introduced an entirely new hovercraft construction concept utilizing aluminum tubing and fabric.
Hovercraft for cranberry farming
1991 Neoteric performed several hovercraft water rescues in Terre Haute, Indiana during flooding.
Drug enforcement hovercraft
Questrek Rescue hovercraft photo
Two navy blue hovercraft during testing on the Wabash River prior to shipping to the Bahamas to be used for drug enforcement, Dec. 1991.
Questrek Rescue hovercraft photo
1991 – present Neoteric founded and registered the North American Light Hovercraft Manufacturers Association, which it continues to support today.
1992 – 2001 Neoteric designed, developed, manufactured, tested and was awarded US Coast Guard Certification for the 8-passenger Neova 8 hovercraft.� Several units were built by Neoteric and kits were shipped to Japan. Later kits were shipped to Harbin Shipbuilding in China for assembly and use. Neoteric provided all components and technical support.
Neova 8 US Coast Guard certification
Swamp navigation hovercraft
Hovercraft 360 V8 engine
Neova 8 cockpit
1992 – present Neoteric infrastructure improvements were begun, including office modernization; new sidewalks; a break room; new roofs and windows; painting the factory inside and out; site beautification; landscaping; and the construction of a courtyard patio. Factory improvements continue.
Hovercraft history Indiana Business Magazine
Indiana Business Magazine, July 1993
1993 – present The development of a full relational database manufacturing software computer program was begun, in order to manage parts, vendors, customers, materials, costing, invoicing, etc.
1994 – 2001 Neoteric designed and produced a full color information pack with promotional photographs.
Esso Colombia Rescue hovercraft
Esso Colombia Questrek rescue hovercraft during on-site training near Cartagena, January 1994
1994 – 1995 Neoteric designed diesel powered 12- and 24-passenger hovercraft for an India contract with SICO.
1997 A 5-member team from Harbin Shipbuilding, China visited Neoteric for 3 months of training.
Neoteric produced the specifications, developed the prototyping, and tested and developed all tooling and manufacturing systems for the Hovertrek 4 seat model.� The first test was conducted in 1999.� Three Hovertrek variants were developed -- recreational, commercial and rescue -- along with partially assembled kits and more than 70 options.
A hovercraft assembly operation was established in Bengbu, China. Neoteric employee Doug Ihrig visited China to conduct assembly training.
1999 In-house development began for a Neoteric Hovercraft, Inc. company web site.
2000 In April, Chris Fitzgerald visited China Hovercraft Company in Bengbu, China and Harbin Shipbuilding in Harbin, China to negotiate contracts.
Harbin Shipbuilding China
China Hovercraft contract
Chris Fitzgerald with the head of Harbin Shipbuilding
Contract meeting with Harbin Shipbuilding officers
Hovercraft history Harbin Shipbuilding
Harbin Shipbuilding hovercraft
Photo Hovercraft test China
Hovercraft demonstration photo
Test drive of one of twelve Neova 8 craft built under license by Harbin Shipbuilding, China
Chris Fitzgerald demonstrates hovercraft operation to Bengbu, China city officials.
China Hovercraft ride
Picture Hovercraft demonstration
Bengbu city officials on board the hovercraft
Demonstrating hovercraft operation on a wheat field.
Rice paddy hovercraft demonstration
Hovercraft pilot training
Demonstrating the hovercraft crossing a berm on a rice paddy.
Chris Fitzgerald conducts classroom instruction during hovercraft pilot training in Bengbu, China.
1999 – 2000 Neoteric produced a commercial quality, 3 hour Hovertrek assembly video to assist customers who purchased partially-assembled models.
A video library for product marketing was begun.
Chris Fitzgerald served as Judge in the London-produced Hovercraft segment of Junkyard Wars.
A new brochure, showing its different applications, was produced for the Hovertrek.
An extensive marketing report was developed.
1999 – present Various models of the Hovertrek were manufactured and marketed.

Since the turn of the century, Neoteric Hovercraft, Inc. has experienced rapid worldwide sales growth, and new dealerships have been established across the globe. Customers include the U.S. Department of Justice, Border Patrol; state airports; U.S. National Parks; and emergency, police, and fire agencies in nations throughout the world.

The 4-passenger Neoteric Hovercraft is now manufactured with a range of 70 options, including 65hp and 100hp engines, as well as fuel injected versions. In 1994, Neoteric developed a 6-passenger Hovercraft; the first of this model, a rescue version, was shipped to South Korea in 2005.

In addition to developing manufacturing systems to meet increased delivery schedules, throughout the 1990s and continuing today, Chris Fitzgerald dedicated considerable company revenues to expanding awareness of the hovercraft’s utility and versatility. He was appointed Chairman of the 2002 World Hovercraft Championship, the largest gathering of hovercraft enthusiasts in history, which brought participants and spectators from more than 18 nations to Terre Haute, Indiana USA.

The company’s most recent endeavors include the founding of the not-for-profit World Hovercraft Organization, and the production of its newsletter, HoverWorld Insider, which has an expanding global readership of more than 20,000. In 2003, the World Hovercraft Organization launched the DiscoverHover International School Hovercraft Program, offering free hovercraft plans, extensive curriculum guides and other support services to schools and youth groups worldwide. Today, DiscoverHover’s membership includes 1,000 schools and youth groups from 44 nations.

With nearly five decades of history, Neoteric Hovercraft, Inc. moves into the new century as a world leader in the light hovercraft industry … but the story does not end here. The definition of the word neoteric is “new, innovative, modern” and, as exemplified by its company name, Neoteric will remain so in the decades to come.

A Photo History of Neoteric Hovercraft, 2000-2009

2000 To commemorate the 40th anniversary of the World's First Hovercraft Race, planning was begun for HoverWorld Expo 2004 in Canberra, Australia.
1961 – present Neoteric Australia provided technical services, prototype components and occasional manufactured parts as well as experimental testing and model building.� Neoteric operates its testing facility at Hastings, Victoria, Australia to the present day.� A new Hovertrek model test program took place in 2001.
2001 – present Neoteric developed, tested, manufactured and marketed its Hovertrek model with a range of 70 options, including 65HP and 100HP engines as well as fuel injected versions.
2001 Chris Fitzgerald was appointed Chairman of the World Hovercraft Championship 2002; he brought the event to Terre Haute, Indiana USA.
2002 Neoteric sponsored and organized WHC 2002, which became the world's most successful and largest gathering of hovercraft enthusiasts in history.
2002 Neoteric Hovercraft, Inc. experienced considerable growth. Hovercraft were purchased by the U.S. Department of Justice, Border Patrol; state airports; U.S. National Parks; and emergency, police, and fire agencies throughout the world.
Two rescue hovercraft were purchased by Anchorage International Airport.
A fleet of five hovercraft were purchased for an environmental survey project in Kuwait.
Two rescue hovercraft were purchased by Ministero dell'Interno in Italy
2003 Chris Fitzgerald founded the World Hovercraft Organization, a not-for-profit organization to represent and serve as an information resource for the international hovercraft/air cushion vehicle world.
Neoteric hovercraft were purchased by US National Parks in Big Bend, Texas and Lake Amistad National Recreational Area.
Planning continued for HoverWorld Expo 2004 for Canberra, Australia.
Factory and machinery upgrades continued. A search for a Production Manager was launched.
Development continued for HoverWorld Expo 2004 and the World Hovercraft Organization. Fitzgerald visited Australia three times during 2003 in May, August, and November.
January, 2003 Chris Fitzgerald traveled to Italy for acceptance trials with the Department of the Interior.
May, 2003 Neoteric's single-user manufacturing system was upgraded to a dynamic, web-based system.
A comprehensive rewriting and redesign of the Neoteric web site was commenced.
June, 2003 Neoteric purchased its own dedicated web server and developed a co-hosting relationship.
August, 2003 Neoteric began the development of Hovercraft Training Schools and established a web site,
David Atkins designed logos for DiscoverHover!, Hovercraft Training, World Hovercraft Organization, and HoverWorld Expo. These were later refined by Aaron Hogan.
September, 2003 The World Hovercraft Organization's DiscoverHover International School Hovercraft Program was founded and the web site was launched..
AutoCAD online design service was established from Neoteric Engineering Affiliates Pty. Ltd. in Melbourne, Australia.
October, 2003 Fitzgerald attended a conference at the British Hovercraft Museum in Southampton, England to present a paper on hovercraft promotion.
Fitzgerald traveled to Kuwait to train and organize those conducting a country-wide coastal survey using Neoteric Hovercraft.
January, 2004 Negotiations began with Igor Lavrov, President of Christy Hovercraft, St. Petersburg, Russian Federation for a Neoteric dealership in St. Petersburg. Since then, Christy Hovercraft has participated in numerous trade shows, performed demonstrations over a huge variety of different terrains, and has submitted a vast number of photographs for Neoteric to use on their website. Extremely capable technically, Lavrov has also set and documented speed records in Russia. By these enthusiastic efforts, he has produced a considerable number of orders.
February, 2004 Development began on a 6-passenger Hovertrek™ utilizing a 100 horsepower liquid cooled Hirth engine. This work was commissioned by long-time customer Tom Dienhart of Wisconsin USA.
  Former Neoteric dealer, High Tech International S.r.l. [HTI] of Gorgonzola, Italy, began an illegal process of unauthorized copying and manufacture, using splash-mold techniques, of Neoteric products. This company also continues to plagiarize copyrighted content from the Neoteric website. This intellectual property infringement is apparent on the HTI web site. HTI continues to manufacture and sell, primarily to government agencies, rescue hovercraft that are unauthorized copies of several Neoteric models.
Neoteric Hovercraft Inc. has no affiliation with HTI, or with other hovercraft companies in Italy who are marketing copies of Neoteric designs. Neoteric Hovercraft, Inc. does not condone, authorize, or support HTI, its president Carlo Guido Passoni, or Matteo Passoni.
A dealer contract had been previously signed with HTI and both Matteo Passoni and his wife, Tatiana Rasskazova, received hovercraft training in October 2001. HTI acquired two dealer demonstration units from Neoteric, but subsequently purchased used Neoteric models in the US marketplace and shipped them to Italy.
March, 2004 Chris Fitzgerald visited Canberra and Melbourne, Australia to organize HoverWorld Expo 2004 and to conduct a press conference when the HoverWorld Expo Official PaceCraft arrived in Australia after shipment from Neoteric Hovercraft USA in January 2004.
May, 2004 Chris Fitzgerald conducted a joint hovercraft training seminar with the company RevCor in Carpentersville, Chicago, Illinois USA.
June, 2004 released the first set of free hovercraft construction plans.
Over a period of ten years, a web-based manufacturing system containing 15,000 lines of code has been written by company employees. This purpose-built information management system should position the company to experience rapid expansion.
July, 2004 Neoteric president, Chris Fitzgerald, traveled to Jecheon City, South Korea for dealer negotiations and training. Fitzgerald also demonstrated the Hovertrek™ Rescue Deluxe Model #3626 to Korean National Fire Authority at Kyungpo Beach, Kangnung Province, South Korea. More Photos …
Korean National Fire Authority Hovertrek™ rescue hovercraft, South Korea, 2004
Korean National Fire Authority Hovertrek rescue hovercraft, South Korea, 2004
August, 2004 British adventurer Robert Hodson visited Neoteric for two weeks to undertake light repairs during his two year excursion crossing the United States from east to west via rivers, dams, lakes and seas. Read more about it here.
October, 2004 The National Capital Authority in Canberra, Australia declined the opportunity to stage HoverWorld Expo 2004. To read more click here.
Neoteric president, Chris Fitzgerald, driving the Hovertrek™ prototype, competed in the first endurance race in more than 25 years and took third place. This was a practice event staged by the Hovercraft Club of America, Inc. in order to develop a practical scoring system for the development of future hovercraft endurance racing. More about endurance racing.
Bryce Woods, Neoteric Hovercraft dealer in New Zealand, visited company headquarters for sales negotiations.
November, 2004 South African Neoteric dealer, Winstone Jordaan, visited Neoteric for pilot and assembly training. During the same month JJ Youn, Neoteric Korean dealer, visited for sales negotiations.
December, 2004 Neoteric Hovercraft, Inc. experienced rapid worldwide sales growth, and meeting timely delivery schedules became a challenge.
February, 2005 Neoteric Technical Director, Robert Wilson, visited from Neoteric Australia for two months to assist with production planning and with engineering refinements.
Neoteric launched the new Work in Progress section of its web site. Updated weekly, this section gives customers, as well as site visitors, access to extensive step-by-step photo galleries of their hovercraft proceeding through Neoteric's hands-on custom manufacturing process.
April, 2005 Neoteric contracted with retired airline training pilot Robert Rossier to produce hovercraft training manuals along with a PowerPoint presentation for hovercraft pilot training. This project is ongoing.
August, 2005 Robert Wilson, Neoteric Technical Director, again visited for production consultation and began development of a rotary engine powered Hovertrek™.
Neoteric's first 6-passenger Hovertrek™ was shipped to South Korea. Development time exceeded 2000 man hours.
October, 2005 Neoteric contracted with Rotamax in Ohio USA to supply a proof-of-concept engine for evaluation. This initiated a long-term testing and development phase.
February, 2006 DreamAir Co. Ltd. president Jong Jun Youn visited Neoteric to discuss the status of his current orders.
June, 2006 Ralph Weas joined Neoteric as Business Manager for the purpose of helping to expand the company and meet demand.
July, 2006 An electrically operated deployment system for an ADCP was developed for the hovercraft to be used by the US Bureau of Reclamation to survey the Yakima River in Oregon.
  A private company, Lakemaster Lake Maps, of Minnesota, purchased a hovercraft for sonar mapping of lakes in North America, including Canada.
August, 2006 Neoteric Technical Director Robert Wilson visited Terre Haute, Indiana USA headquarters for new engine development, product development, testing, and to assist with organizing the factory for increased production capacity.
  Tristan Linck produced curriculum guides for DiscoverHover, which continued to grow and exceeded 2000 participating students, teachers, and schools from throughout the world.
  Futurist Extreme Fun President Winston Jordaan, Neoteric's dealer in South Africa, achieved his first sale, for a 4-place Inline Deluxe to Natal Nature Conservation.
  Hovercraft pilot training continued and a comprehension test and student pilot surveys were added to the training regimen. Photos of training and certified pilots may be viewed on
  The World Hovercraft Organization continued to be funded by Neoteric Hovercraft, who produces its free email and online quarterly newsletter, HoverWorld Insider, publishing a wide variety of news pertaining to the global light hovercraft industry. As of August 2006, HoverWorld Insider had more than 18,000 subscribers worldwide.
December, 2006 The newly-developed body mold for the Hovertrek™ 6, Neoteric’s six-passenger hovercraft, was completed and placed in production. See Hovertrek™ 6 photos here.
  Neoteric’s manufacturing facility was expanded, with three new mezzanines, a new spray booth and a new sanding room in the Fiberglassing Division.
February, 2007 Neoteric President Chris Fitzgerald traveled to Australia to train the company’s first Australian customer, Frederick (Ted) Crocker from Geelong in Victoria. Mr. Crocker purchased the unused HoverWorld Expo Official PaceCraft, stored in Australia since 2004, which he will use for duck hunting.
Australian Hovercraft pilot training
Neoteric’s first Australian customer received pilot training from Chris Fitzgerald at Neoteric’s test & training facility in Hastings, Victoria. More photos here
  While in Australia, Chris Fitzgerald met with co-designer engineers David Atkins and Robert Wilson concerning Hovertrek™ design upgrades and production/manufacturing improvements.
  Testing continued on evaluating and improving a new rotary-powered hovercraft.

Robert Wilson began full-fledged design and model construction of a new Hyper Performance Hovercraft for racing. This machine will utilize technology developed by Neoteric in the early years (1960s and early 1970s) but never used until now. The anticipation is that this machine will continue to ensure Neoteric’s forefront position and set a new high mark for this burgeoning new industry.

April, 2007 David Atkins returned to the US to undertake design improvements, to upgrade seating and lighting, and to assist with corporate planning.
May, 2007 Work started in earnest to combat the illegal theft of Neoteric identity and technology by Matteo Passoni of HTI in Italy.
6 July, 2007 Neoteric received a Demand to Cease and Desist from lawyer Gary P. Barket of Little Rock, Arkansas USA on behalf of PhD Ing Matteo Passoni, General Manager of Hi Tech International S.r.l. of Gorgonzola-Milan, Italy concerning a Trade Disparagement of Hi Tech International. HTI's demands included a $20,000 cash payment, removal of HTI and its principals from the Neoteric website, and altering the history section to exclude the names of Matteo Passoni, Tatiana Rasskazova, and Carlo Guido Passoni. HTI’s actions were dropped as their unlawful activities were exposed.
July, 2007 Neoteric demonstrated the Hovertrek™ 6 Rescue craft to a delegation from India.
Picture India Hovercraft demonstration
Oct. - Nov., 2007 The Indianapolis Fire Department purchased a Neoteric rescue hovercraft, triggering a flurry of news stories in the Indianapolis Star, WTHI television news in Terre Haute, and Fox 59 and WISH TV 8 in Indianapolis (here), as well as WISH TV anchor Eric Halvorson's blog entry of 31 October, 2007.
February, 2008 Neoteric amplified focus on improving manufacturing efficiency in order to meet demand. The establishment of work station cells for machinery, general assembly, electrical, cables, skirts, and upholstery were accelerated.
13-14 February, 2008 Neoteric dealers Igor and Ella Lavrov, of Christyhovercraft in St. Petersburg, Russia, visited Neoteric for business meetings.
March, 2008 Neoteric’s new Fiberglassing Division was placed in operation.
  Design work and model testing research of the new NeoRacer Model 6153 SuperSport 100 mph racing hovercraft proceeds in Australia. Rob Wilson is responsible for the design work while David Atkins is involved with craft styling.
April, 2008 Work was completed on new 6-passenger hovercraft body, hull, seat, and cabin molds.
May, 2008 Chad Steimel, company engineer, began parts and assembly drawings in AutoCAD and ProE.
June, 2008 Testing on MZ and rotary engines continued in order to evaluate engines for future use.
September, 2008 In its Hovercraft Ripoff Report, the World Hovercraft Organization web site details the industrial and economic espionage, intellectual property infringement and trade disparagement committed by Hi Tech International S.r.l. against Neoteric Hovercraft, Inc. and publicizes safety concerns about HTI’s counterfeit hovercraft.
January, 2009 Rob Wilson, Neoteric Technical Director, continues development of the 100 mph Neoteric High Speed Craft, with body design by David Atkins.
  Development of AutoCAD drawings, and systems and standards are continued by company engineer Chad Steimel.
February, 2009 The Neoteric factory established assembly bays in continuation of the process of improving manufacturing efficiency.
  As a result of its plagiarism of the Neoteric Hovercraft web site, Hi Tech International S.r.l. was found in violation of the US Digital Millennium Copyright Act, and the majority of its web site pages were banned from Google search engine results. Google placed the following notice on each search results page that formerly contained HTI links: In response to a complaint we received under the US Digital Millennium Copyright Act, we have removed [#] result(s) from this page. If you wish, you may read the DMCA complaint that caused the removal(s) at

Other major search engines such as Yahoo! are also removing HTI web site pages from their search results.
March, 2009 Neoteric began consultations with MediaSauce, an Indianapolis, Indiana marketing firm, to expand Neoteric’s marketing program.
  The rotary evaluation engine was rebuilt and the 50-hour test program continued.
  Neoteric designed a new 25-seat gas turbine-powered hovercraft.
April, 2009 Neoteric trains and certifies US Air Force Utah Test and Training Range Fire Department in whitewater rescue piloting. See video and photos.
  Alan Fitzgerald, Australia, visits Neoteric to streamline the company’s accounting processes and assist with an Indiana state audit.
15 May, 2009 Neoteric trains and certifies personnel from Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution to pilot their new 6-passenger commercial HoverTrek™. The hovercraft will be used to measure water currents on the Skagit Bay Tidal Flats in Washington, USA. See photos and read comments.
May - Dec., 2009 Neoteric contracted 3D Engineering Solutions, Cincinnati, Ohio to undertake a complete digital mapping of all master plugs and to prepare CNC (Computer Numerically Controlled) machine tool paths for new tool building. The project was completed in December 2009.
July, 2009 MediaSauce, an Indianapolis, Indiana marketing firm, was contracted to partner with Neoteric to design and implement a continuing marketing evolutionary philosophy for the company and to position Neoteric in the digital marketplace.
August, 2009 Neoteric terminated its three year 50-hour Rotamax 70 HP rotary engine evaluation, in part because Rotamax was liquidated and could no longer support their engine technically. At the same time, Neoteric began the evaluation of all 4-cycle high performance engines suitable for hovercraft use.
  Neoteric engineering team Rob Wilson and David Atkins continued their work in Australia on the design and development of the new Neoteric High Performance Hovercraft.
  Neoteric began a major upgrade of its computer-based manufacturing system.
18 August, 2009 Neoteric trains and certifies pilots from the ST-5 Hovercraft Team and the Hovering Across Canada Foundation. Their Neoteric Hovercraft will make history by being the first light hovercraft to fly 11,000 km from Victoria, BC to St. John’s, NFLD to raise funds for the fight against prostate cancer. A film crew will accompany the team to shoot episodes for a national/international reality show.
September, 2009 A documentary film crew travels to Neoteric’s corporate headquarters film its Rescue HoverTrek™ performing a water rescue on the Wabash River. See a photo gallery of the day’s events, including the filming of the water rescue and a tour of the Neoteric Hovercraft manufacturing facility.
7 November, 2009 Neoteric makes headlines by using hovercraft technology to move a 7,000-pound steel building. Neoteric’s hoverlifter technology is used for such purposes as moving half-ton units around on top of a 140-acre factory roof. See Building Floats for photos and details.
  Neoteric launches a new blog providing an inside view into the hovercraft industry: Neoteric Hovercraft Blog
18 December, 2009 Neoteric signs its first hovercraft dealer in Taiwan, Yoshine Helicopter Company, and Chris Fitzgerald trains Yoshine hovercraft pilots Gordon, Charles and Peggy Lin. See photos

As the original light hovercraft manufacturer, Neoteric moves into its sixth decade as one of a very few hovercraft manufacturers in history with 50 years of experience and expertise. In addition to its manufacturing and engineering experience, Neoteric has trained and certified rescue, recreational, commercial and military hovercraft pilots during that time. Neoteric’s exclusive Hovercraft Pilot Training program is the most comprehensive light hovercraft pilot training course available.

As an ambiguous testament to the one-of-a-kind engineering and design of the Hovercraft, Neoteric has in recent years been exploited by individuals/companies intent upon committing industrial espionage and theft of trade secrets in order to counterfeit Neoteric’s patented and trademarked designs. Of great concern is the fact that hovercraft are increasingly utilized in rescue operations; counterfeit rescue hovercraft pose a threat to the lives of first responders and to the lives of those they are tasked to save. With assistance from Federal and international agencies, Neoteric and the World Hovercraft Organization continue to prosecute and attempt to put a halt to such unlawful offenses.

Neoteric Hovercraft are not mass-produced; each craft is custom manufactured by hand. As factory production increases, Neoteric must strive to maintain this hands-on attention and, at the same time, increase manufacturing efficiency. Much of Neoteric’s engineering effort over the past several years has been devoted to this challenge. The technology section of the Neoteric website describes this process in greater detail, with photos.

Also on the technology front, Neoteric engineering team Rob Wilson and David Atkins, both founding members of the company, continue their work in Australia on the new high speed two-person performance hovercraft with the goal of establishing the World Speed Record for light hovercraft. This goal will be accomplished by reintroducing Neoteric technology that was actually conceived during the early 1970s.

A Photo History of Neoteric Hovercraft, 2010-2019

Jan. – Dec., 2010
In its research and development of alternative hovercraft power plants, Neoteric canceled its 3-year evaluation of the Rotamax Rotary engine. Research and development continues on 3-cylinder, 4-cycle powered machinery module.
18 February, 2010
Chris Fitzgerald conducts rescue hovercraft pilot training for the Crosslake Fire & Rescue Department, Crosslake, Minnesota USA.  The department purchased their Neoteric Rescue HoverTrek™ after receiving an anonymous $23,000 donation.
March, 2010
Neoteric President Chris Fitzgerald travels to Sweden to conduct a week-long training course for a team of hovercraft pilot instructors from the Swedish Sea Rescue Society, Svenska Sjöräddnings Sällskapet. The organization utilizes two Neoteric HoverTrek™ Rescue hovercraft. Read more
  Hovercraft Pilot training Sweden                              Image Neoteric Hovercraft Sweden
8 March, 2010
Neoteric learns that Keltic Marine Group, Nova Scotia, and Hi Tech International S.r.l. in Italy, operating as“HTI America”, have joined forces to market in North America the hovercraft that HTI counterfeited from the patented Neoteric HoverTrek™ through economic/industrial espionage. Neoteric continues its legal actions in coordination with national and international agencies to halt HTI’s unlawful activities.
April, 2010
Neoteric President Chris Fitzgerald traveled to Australia to visit Ross McLeod of Airlift Hovercraft, and Gary Ashton of Mariah Hovercraft, two manufacturers who are building hovercraft for the South Korean Coast Guard. Airlift Hovercraft is located in Surface Paradise, Queensland AU; Mariah Hovercraft is located in Hastings, Victoria AU.
  In April 2010, Neoteric developed a new gull wing cabin door.
25 April, 2010
Eight Neoteric hovercraft performed the closing spectacular of the Indian Premier League (IPL3) 2010 Cricket Championship in Mumbai, India - one of the six largest sporting events in the world. Neoteric was chosen because of the stylish design and maneuverability of the HoverTrek™, the only hovercraft on the market able to pirouette, travel sideways and in reverse, and hover in place to perform a choreographed routine – and hovercraft are the only vehicle that will not damage a fragile cricket field.
  See IPL3 hovercraft videos; read Hoverin’ Around the World and read the inside story From Indiana to India.
  Neoteric Image-Hovercraft IPL3 Cricket Championship India
23 June, 2010
Chris Fitzgerald conducts hovercraft pilot training for the Winous Point Marsh Conservancy, home of the oldest duck hunting club in America. The Conservancy preserves a 5,500-acre marsh and maintains a wildlife habitat on the shores of Lake Erie’s Sandusky Bay in Point Clinton, Ohio USA. Read more
6 July, 2010
Neoteric serves Hi Tech International S.r.l. with a Cease and Desist Order. The Order requires that a) HTI remove from its websites the material it plagiarized from the Neoteric website; b) HTI remove Neoteric’s trademarked business name from the meta tags on their websites; and c) HTI cease the manufacture and sale of hovercraft illegally pirated from Neoteric through economic/industrial espionage and theft of trade secrets by Matteo Passoni/HTI.
7 July, 2010
Neoteric serves Keltic Marine Group with a Cease and Desist Order. The Order requires that a) Keltic Marine remove from its website the technical diagrams HTI plagiarized from the Neoteric website; b) Keltic remove all false and misleading statements from its website; and c) Keltic, operating as “HTI America”, cease the manufacture and sale of hovercraft illegally pirated from Neoteric through economic/industrial espionage and theft of trade secrets by Matteo Passoni/HTI
16 July, 2010
After HTI ignores Neoteric’s Cease and Desist Order, Neoteric files a DMCA Complaint against HTI with all major global search engines for its repeated violation of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act. Google immediately finds that more than 700 URLs on the HTI website violate the Digital Millennium Copyright Act and unlawfully infringe upon copyrighted/trademarked material from the Neoteric website. Google immediately bans each of those pages from its search index.
2 August, 2010

Keltic Marine Group complies with Neoteric’s Cease & Desist Order by removing from its website the copyrighted illustrations plagiarized from Neoteric’s website, and removing the false statement that HTI has been manufacturing hovercraft since 1995. However, Keltic continues to operate as “HTI America”, manufacturing/marketing hovercraft that were illegally counterfeited from Neoteric through economic/industrial espionage and theft of trade secrets committed by Matteo Passoni/HTI.

Neoteric continues to work with the Counterintelligence Division of the FBI and other national/international governmental and private agencies to protect its intellectual property and trademarked products from espionage committed by Hi Tech International S.r.l.
7-10 August, 2010
Neoteric was honored by a visit from John Talmage, the company’s very first customer, and his wife Carol, who were instrumental in the launch of Neoteric Hovercraft, Inc. in the 1970s. Talmage, a pilot and farmer in Long Island, New York, built his own hovercraft in 1965. In 1976, he financed the first hovercraft produced by the newly-founded Neoteric Hovercraft, Inc.

  The Neova 2, the first hovercraft manufactured
by Neoteric Hovercraft, Inc.
Photo Hovercraft history Neova 2                              Talmadge 1970
October, 2010
Neoteric completed an upgrade to its manufacturing facilities, including the addition of a flexible storage building as well as refinishing the loading dock and all outside storage containers.
November, 2010
Neoteric President Chris Fitzgerald is invited to South Korea and China to demonstrate the Neoteric Rescue Hovertrek™ to military officials and rescue agencies. On November 23, as a demonstration to the South Korean Navy was about to begin, North Korea launched an attack upon South Korea 25-50 miles from the demonstration site. Navy officials were recalled to their bases and the demonstration was postponed.
  Fitzgerald with South Korean military officials just                                    Fitzgerald describes Neoteric's unique reverse thrust
prior to the attack by North Korea.                                                            system to the Xiamen, China Fire Department.
Image Neoteric Hovercraft South Korea                              Image Neoteric Hovercraft China
  See the complete photo gallery: Neoteric Hovercraft in China and South Korea
December, 2010
Keltic Marine Group (see 8 March 2010 above) informs Neoteric that Keltic has severed all business relations with Hi Tech International S.r.l. and Matteo Passoni “due to very questionable business activities including evidence of counterfeiting and forgery in his business dealings”, including but not limited to:
  • “behavior unbecoming an Officer and Director of the Company”
  • “refusal to meet financial obligations and ethical responsibilities”
  • “continuing inflow of evidence of inappropriate business activities”
  • “most distasteful business dealings”
  • “Trying to open false E-bay accounts in the company name … is certainly not indicative of someone who is legitimate.”
Jan. – Dec. 2011 The popularity of the Hovertrek™ continued in 2011, during which Neoteric custom manufactured rescue, recreational, commercial and military hovercraft for clients in the following nations:
  • Canada
  • China
  • Finland
  • Kuwait
  • Russia
  • South Korea
  • Sweden
  • Thailand
  • Ukraine
  • USA
Jan. – Dec. 2011 For more than five decades, Neoteric has been globally recognized for innovation in technology and artistry in design; the Hovertrek™ is the most thoroughly tested light hovercraft on the market. This meticulous evaluation was amplified during 2011 and included classified Wind Tunnel testing in Australia at the prestigious Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology School of Aerospace, Mechanical and Manufacturing Engineering (SAMME). The RMIT Wind Tunnel is used to advance the development of new vehicles for such manufacturers as Audi, Bentley, BMW and Rolls-Royce. This wind tunnel aerodynamics modeling is paving the way for a technological leap forward: a futuristic limited edition Neoteric hovercraft, Model 6153, that will break world speed records and capture global headlines.
Image High speed hovercraft model RMIT wind tunnel
  Rob Wilson, President, Neoteric Engineering Affiliates, Ptd. Ltd. (left rear) and David Atkins, Design Engineer, Neoteric Hovercraft, Inc. (right rear), appear with School of Aerospace research personnel and a 1/3 scale model of the Neoteric High Speed Hovercraft inside the RMIT industrial wind tunnel.

  In 2011, the company's dedication to constant improvement applied not only to Neoteric products and designs but to procedures, systems, marketing materials and vendor products as well:

  • Chad Steimel, Vice President, Engineering, refined AutoCAD drawings, organized manufacturing data, and upgraded the company’s hovercraft operations instruction manuals.

  • Ryan Dagey, Information Technology Director, advanced Neoteric’s web-based manufacturing system and developed programming for both existing and future web sites, including a new site for the Neoteric Hovercraft Pilot Training program.

  • In 2011 Neoteric neared completion of a major project: the digitizing of an extensive collection of hovercraft histroy, which includes documents, films, videos and slides. During 2012, the collection will be added to the Neoteric web site's comprehensive History of the Hovercraft.
Jan. – Dec. 2011 International, national, regional and local media covered the activities of Neoteric Hovercraft, Inc. as well as the accomplishments of its clients, particularly those involving rescue operations: Neoteric Hovercraft in the News
February, 2011 Neoteric contracted with an Indianapolis agency to produce a new logo and web site for the company's Hovercraft Pilot Training program. The finished products, however, did not meet the company's high standards. Similar difficulties were previously experienced with another Indianapolis agency who was commissioned to upgrade the current Neoteric web site; the agency's design was deemed to pose a risk to Neoteric's excellent search engine rankings.
March, 2011 Emergency responders from Fire District 19 and the Stillagaumish Water Rescue Team in Silvana, Washington USA complete rescue hovercraft pilot training at Neoteric.
  Image Neoteric Hovercraft Pilot training
April, 2011 Neoteric Military HoverTrek™ LCAC Trainer was introduced was introduced to U.S. and South Korean Generals during a joint military exercise in South Korea. See video and photos of this military hovercraft  which is engineered as a training apparatus for LCAC (Landing Craft Air Cushion) pilots and navigators.
  	Neoteric Military HoverTrek LCAC Trainer Introduced in South Korea
May, 2011 Filip Przybysz, Vice President, Marketing, joined the company to develop new marketing directions and to oversee the expansion of the Neoteric Hovercraft Pilot Training program and web site
June, 2011 Rescue personnel from the Utah Test and Training Range at Hill Air Force Base completed a week of specialized military hovercraft pilot training at Neoteric, including night rescue operations. Prior to the Air Force purchase of two Neoteric hovercraft, emergency response times could take more than three hours, but their hovercraft now allow them to reach victims in minutes.

  Image hovercraft history military                              Photo military hovercraft history
  The Roswell Fire Department, Roswell, Georgia USA completes pilot training in their new Neoteric 6-passenger rescue hovercraft, which was purchased with a Homeland Security Grant. Fire Chief Ricky Spencer states, "There are 13 miles of the Chattahoochee River in Roswell, with lots of shallow areas. Rescue boats just didn't meet our needs." Full story with hovercraft video and photos …
  Image rescue hovercraft Homeland Security Grant
July, 2011 Engineers, mechanics and marketing personnel from Freeway Technologies Co. Ltd., Xiamen, China, completed a week of hovercraft flight training and maintenance instruction at Neoteric's USA headquarters. Freeway, Neoteric's distributor in China, specializes in the design, manufacture and international trade of aviation and rescue equipment.
  Image China hovercraft pilot training                                      	Photo Freeway Technologies Xiamen China
  See a photo gallery of Neoteric President Chris Fitzgerald's previous visit to Xiamen, China to train Freeway Technologies' hovercraft mechanics.
                                                            	Image hovercraft China mechanics
August, 2011 Officials from the Government of Hong Kong, the Hong Kong Fire Services Department, and China Pacific Marine, Ltd. visited Neoteric to conduct stringent performance testing on the Fire Department's newly manufactured 6-passenger rescue hovercraft prior to its shipment to China. Neoteric met and surpassed all the specific governmental standards. China Pacific Marine, Neoteric's Hong Kong agent, has been a provider of marine products to both government and the private sector for more than four decades.
  Image China Pacific Marine testing                                   Photo Hong Kong Fire Services Department hovercraft    
  Firefighters from the White River-Hazleton Volunteer Fire Department, Hazleton, Indiana USA complete rescue hovercraft pilot training at Neoteric's headquarters in their new 6-passenger rescue hovercraft. Read the full story with rescue hovercraft videos and photos …
  Photo 6 passenger rescue hovercraft
  The U.S. Department of the Interior credits a Neoteric hovercraft for 17 different water rescue operations in one week on Wisconsin's St. Croix River that brought 98 people to safety. The hovercraft is owned and operated by the St. Croix Tribal Police. Full story with hovercraft photos and news coverage …
  Picture St Croix Tribal Police rescue hovercraft
October, 2011 WealthTV, the exclusive cable television network, selected the Neoteric Hovertrek to be featured on its popular program Boys Toys. The show's host, TV host/actress/model Jenn Barlow, brought a crew to Neoteric's headquarters to film the Boys Toys episode, which will air in early 2012.
Image hovercraft Boys Toys Wealth TV                                   Image Jenn Barlow Boys Toys hovercrafts   
  Also in October, Neoteric President Chris Fitzgerald traveled to the Dominican Republic to consult with a client on the establishment of a tourism business and to conduct on-site specialized commercial hovercraft pilot training on the Atlantic Ocean. The client subsequently launched a new venture offering hovercraft passenger tours along the shoreline of Punta Cana in his new 100 hp 6-passenger Hovertrek.
  Image Hovercraft tours Punta Cana                                   Photo Hovercrafts rides Dominican Republic
  Sebastian and Ghislaine van Berkom of Montreal, Canada complete recreational hovercraft pilot training in their new Neoteric Hovertrek. Their craft will be used for transport to an island in Canada when ice prevents the use of any other vehicle. Full story with photos of their hovercraft …
  Recreational hovercraft image
  First responders from the Perry-Clear Creek Fire Department, Bloomington, Indiana USA complete rescue hovercraft pilot training and maintenance instruction in their new 6-passenger Rescue Hovertrek. See a photo gallery of their pilot training …
  Rescue hovercraft pilot training image
  Dirk Lohry, a private airplane pilot from McCook Lake, South Dakota USA, completes recreational hovercraft pilot training at Neoteric. Lohry lives on a lake, and the hovercraft he is building from a Neoteric partially-assembled kit will let him navigate the lake over thin and broken ice for the first time. Read Lohry’s advice on piloting a hovercraft …
  Image recreational hovercraft pilot
November, 2011 Francesco Musorrafiti, Chairman and CEO of EPS Corporation, accompanied by the company's Chief Counsel, its Senior Vice President for Business Development and its Corporate Aircraft Pilot, visited Neoteric to discuss a joint business venture. EPS Corporation's global operations provide services and products to governments, civilian agencies and commercial entities. The company manufactures the EPS M10 100- passenger hovercraft as well as the Slingsby 20-passenger composite diesel powered hovercraft, and is interested in adding Neoteric's light hovercraft range to their product lines.

Also in November, President Chris Fitzgerald, accompanied by Neoteric Flight Instructor Steve Stafford, traveled to Hong Kong to conduct six days of challenging hovercraft pilot training and maintenance instruction for the Hong Kong Fire Services Department in their 6-passenger rescue Hovertrek. The hovercraft is an essential vehicle, particularly for water rescue operations, in Hong Kong, where rivers, canals, channels, drainage ditches, estuaries and fish farms proliferate.

  Image Hong Kong Hovercraft pilot training                                               Picture China Hovercraft flight training
  Leaving Hong Kong, Chris Fitzgerald then traveled to Bangkok, Thailand to conduct pilot training at the Wat Phra Dhammakaya Temple and the Dhammakaya Foundation in their two 6-passenger Neoteric rescue hovercraft. The Temple monks are using the hovercraft for water rescue operations in the current flood crisis – the worst flooding in Thailand in more than 50 years. The training took place on the flooded roadways surrounding the Temple.
  Photo Thailand flood rescue hovercraft training                                    Image rescue hovercraft flood relief Thailand Dhammakaya Foundation
March, 2012 Neoteric President Chris Fitzgerald traveled to Bubiyan Island, Kuwait to conduct five days of pilot and maintenance training for Hyundai Engineering and Construction Co. Ltd. personnel. Hyundai E&C is using a Neoteric six-passenger Hovertrek™ in the construction of the controversial Mubarak Al-Kabeer Port on the Khor Abdullah waterway, a project that has raised tensions with Iraq. Full story/photo gallery …

  Image Hovercraft Training Mubarak Al-Kabir Port Project Kuwait                                    Image Hovercraft Training Mubarak Al-Kabir Port Project Kuwait

                                                           Image Hovercraft Training Mubarak Al-Kabir Port Project Kuwait

April, 2012 First responders from the Norman Township Fire Department, Wellston, Michigan USA complete rescue hovercraft pilot training in their new Neoteric rescue hovercraft, which was funded by a government grant. One asset of the hovercraft will be to replace “ice rescues done the old fashioned way: with rope and ice rescue suits,” the officers state. Full story with photos of their rescue hovercraft …
  Image Norman Township Fire Department Rescue hovercraft training
May, 2012 In preparation for the flood season in Bengbu, China, two Neoteric hovercraft demonstrate rescue operations on the Huaihe River. The craft, built from Neoteric Kits before the year 2000 by the now defunct Feida Hovercraft Co. in Bengbu, China, are operated by former Feida personnel. Several hovercraft assembled by Feida from Neoteric kits are still operating in Xuzhou City in Jiangsu Province, China, where former Feida employees still support their products through maintenance and continued pilot training.
  Neoteric Hovercraft kits picture Bengbu China
August 2012 Neoteric Hovercraft is featured in an episode of Boys Toys on Wealth TV, hosted by Emmy-nominated Jenn Barlow. The show’s promo says, “Talk about a rush! This one-of-a-kind amphibious vehicle will have you re-evaluating your definition of the word ‘cool’!”Watch the video here ...
October, 2012 A Neoteric hovercraft is used in a major environment restoration project on Pelican Island, a key Barrier Island off the coast of Louisiana, by Great Lakes Dredge & Dock Co. (GLDD), the USA’s largest provider of dredging services. The island is crucial in protecting Louisiana citizens from storm surges and is one of the USA’s richest fisheries.

Christy Hovercraft, Neoteric’s agent in Russia, participates in an international conference held by EMERCON, the Chief Department of the Russian Emergency Services Ministry. Christy Hovercraft reports, “The Hovertrek attracted great interest from senior governmental officials. It was noted that Neoteric hovercraft are extremely mobile, amphibious, have a low-profile design, good ergonomics and low maintenance ... all beneficial attributes for emergency work.”
Jan 2013 Oakley, Bubba Watson’s sponsor, selected Neoteric to build the world’s first hovercraft golf cart for Bubba, the BW1, then hired the famous video agency, Thinkmodo, to create the video Bubba’s Hover. The filming, done in stealth mode to keep the project top secret until the video was released three months later, took place at the Raven Gold Club in Phoenix, Arizona. Read More...
  Bubba’s Hover filming Bubba Watson Neoteric Hovercraft golf cart BW1
Neoteric President Chris Fitzgerald instructs Bubba Watson at the filming of Bubba’s Hover.
Apr 2013 Bubba’s Hover, featuring Bubba Watson and Neoteric President Chris Fitzgerald, was released on YouTube. It immediately became a global sensation, achieving 4 ½ million views in just a few days. Watch the video …
  Bubba’s Hover video YouTube viral video BW1 Bubba Watson photo
  Immediately, Bubba’s Hover and Neoteric are featured in numerous national and international media, including Fortune Magazine, Kingdom Magazine, Hammacher Schlemmer and all the national TV networks. NBC’s Today show featured co-hosts Matt Lauer and Al Roker flying Bubba’s Hover.
  NBC Today Matt Lauer Al Roker fly BW1 Bubba’s Hover Hovercraft golf cart
Apr, 2013  April 26th 2013, we were contacted by Alex Iguchi the head golf professional from the Superior resort in the Ukraine. Subsequently a Hover Golf cart was shipped by container on the 28th August 2013.

On the 25th October 2013 Filip Przybysz, Neoteric’s sales director and Chris from Neoteric visited Kharkov’s Superior Golf and Spar in Ukraine to train the resident golf pro to operate the craft and to participate in publicity shots. While visiting the club we were given a tour and shown the club’s locker rooms where President Putin had his own Golf Club locker as he is or was a long-term member of the club.

  Photo of craft on Golf Course in Kharkov
May, 2013  Neoteric President Chris Fitzgerald is invited to Assault Craft Unit 4 in Virginia Beach to review the U.S. Navy’s training protocol for LCAC (Landing Craft, Air Cushion) crews. He is working with officials to develop a proposal for the Navy to consider using the Neoteric HoverTrek for initial LCAC crew training. His visit included a chance to pilot an LCAC on the Atlantic Ocean.
  LCAC Landing Craft Air Cushion ACU4 LCAC training
June, 2013 Chris Fitzgerald visits Hirth Engines (Göbler-Hirthmotoren KG) in Germany, Neoteric’s largest supplier. The visit resulted in Hirth’s agreement to modify their engines to Neoteric’s specifications. Read the full story …

Hirth owner Siegfried Göbler (left) and Chief Engineer Dietrich Kehe (right) meet with Neoteric President Chris Fitzgerald (center).

July, 2013 From July through September, The Neoteric HoverGolf™ cart, the official limited edition replica of Bubba Watson’s BW1, is featured on the cover of the Hammacher Schlemmer catalog and their web site.
  Hammacher Schlemmer Neoteric Hovercraft Golf Cart
  In July, film crews from New York City and Los Angeles filmed a company profile about Neoteric Hovercraft - which will be seen by more than 6 million monthly viewers as part of the Yahoo! Finance Breakout Profiles series. See videos of the filming …
  Yahoo Finance Breakout Profiles Neoteric Hovercraft golf cart
  And in July, Windy Knoll Golf Club in Springfield, Ohio became the first of the world’s 35,000+ golf courses to own two Neoteric HoverGolf™cartsthe official limited edition replica of Bubba Watson’s BW1. Like Bubba’s Hover, this brought about another global media tsunami. Read the full story …
  Windy Knoll
  Also in July, On July  26, Indiana Congressman Larry Bucshon visits Neoteric and Hovercraft Training Centers to discuss his advice and advocacy on a proposal for HTC to provide hovercraft flight training to the U.S. Departments of Defense and Homeland Security. See videos and photos …
  Photo Larry Buschon Hovercraft ride Homeland Security Flight training
August, 2013 Superior Golf & Spa Resort is the first golf course in Ukraine to own a Neoteric Hovercraft Golf Cart, the official limited edition replica of Bubba Watson’s BW1.
  Ukraine Hovercraft Golf cart Neoteric Superior Golf & Spa resort
  And in August, Neoteric customizes a hovercraft for customer Bob Vanderheiden in burnt orange, the color of his other recreational vehicles, including his three Jeeps.
  Also in August, Neoteric was featured on, a website that showcases “the most interesting gear and amazing getaways for adventurous women who love the outdoors.” Adventurous women Neoteric Hovercraft
September, 2013 The Embassy of Pakiston in Washington D.C. purchases two Neoteric hovercraft for the Pakistan Air Force to use in rescue operations.
  Image Neoteric Hovercraft Pakistan Air Force Pakistan Embassy
  Also In September, action is taken against two Russian companies who are committing industrial and economic espionage; theft of technology and trade secrets by counterfeiting the Neoteric HoverTrek: Air Wing (aka Production Company MSK and 000 Airoslava) and MosHovercraft Group (aka Globatek Group JSC). These counterfeit hovercraft may pose a serious threat to consumers, as well as risk the lives of first responders and those they are tasked to save.
  Russian Counterfeit hovercraft pirated Unsafe hovercraft Air Wing MosHovercraft
  In September, Paul Biggerstaff of Woosung, Illinois purchased a Neoteric HoverTrek with a unique hand-painted camouflage color scheme, and learned to fly it at Hovercraft Training Centers.
  Picture Hovercraft custom painted Hovercraft training
  In September, the Prairieton, Indiana Fire Department takes ownership of the Neoteric rescue hovercraft formerly used by the Vigo County Emergency Management Agency in Terre Haute, Indiana. As Dick Setleff, former Emergency Management director said, “It’s about the price of a good motorcycle, and that’s nothing if you can use it to save just one life.”
  Neoteric Rescue Hovercraft Emergency Management
  And in September, Walt Sitz builds his hovercraft from a Neoteric Partially-Assembled Hovercraft Kit, which he will use for recreational activities, but also to help others. Sitz owns Eagle Wings, Inc. in Oregon and belongs to Crisis Response International, a non-profit organization that provides rescue and relief support to humanitarian missions worldwide.
  Picture Rescue Hovercraft Crisis Response International Build your own Hovercraft kit
November, 2013 The Neoteric Hovercraft Golf Cart is a huge hit at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas, as a showcased product at the 2013 Great Gift Wrap Up. See attendees’ reactions in this video …
  Image Neoteric Hovercraft Golf cart Caesars Palace Great Gift Wrap Up Las Vegas
  Also in November, the leading aquaculture and marine science institutions in China purchase a Neoteric HoverTrek™ to use in research operations. These include Yellow Sea Fisheries Research Institute, Shanghai Ocean University, the Ministry of Agriculture Ocean Fisheries Training Center, the China Fisheries Network, and the Chinese Academy of Fishery Sciences.
Nov 2013 Sascha Muller, the General Manager for the Siebal family called concerning the urgent delivery of an ultra-deluxe 6 passenger craft to be a surprise Christmas gift for Tom Siebal from his wife. The craft had to be delivered to Puerto Vallarto in Mexico before the 25th Dec 2013. Ralph Weas, Neoteric’s sales director delivered the craft on the 21st Dec by company van. Ralph returned home on Christmas day the 25th Dec 2013 after an epic journey filled with adventure, challenges and danger.
  On the 28th Dec 2013 Chris, Neoteric President flew to Puerto Vallarto on the Gulf of California. Three days were spent readying the craft and then to train Tom, his daughter Taylor, Sasha and Marine Captain Zavier Cabildo to operate their new craft in ocean waters off the Gulf of California. Photo of Tom’s craft
  Sascha Muller
December, 2013 John and Maureen Wright live on an island in Canada. No other vehicle would get them to and from the mainland when the water is not frozen enough to walk on or too frozen for a boat. They solved the problem by purchasing a Neoteric hovercraft.
  Hovercraft Ice vehicle Ice boat Vehicle for partially frozen water

And in December, a video of a Neoteric hovercraft performing a deer rescue goes viral. James and Doug Kenison, owners of MedCity Hovercraft in Rochester, Minnesota use their Neoteric Hovertrek to rescue three exhausted deer, stranded on the ice for days on Albert Lea Lake. Watch the video …
January, 2014 Discovery Channel’s Tech Toys 360 airs an episode about Neoteric Hovercraft. The show features Neoteric President Chris Fitzgerald, shows our Hovercraft Golf Cart in action and tours the Neoteric factory to see how Bubba’s Hover was manufactured. Watch the preview …
  Bubba's Hover Discovery Channel Hovercraft Golf cart Innovative vehicles Tech Toys 360 Velocity TV Hovercraft video
  And in January, a Neoteric HoverTrek and a HoverGolf Cart are invited to give rides at “the ultimate adventure in Capitalism”: Noble Financial Capital Markets’ 10th Annual Equity Conference (“Noble 10”), an exclusive event for Wall Street executives and investors at Club Med in Port St. Lucie, Florida.
  Club Med Hovercraft Golf cart Military recruiting Noble 10 Noble Financial Capital Markets Wall Street events
  Also in January, Barry Eison of Tennessee purchased a Neoteric HoverTrek for hunting and fishing – but he also has plans to become a Neoteric dealer. Eison says, “I’ve looked at just about every hovercraft out there. If you go online and look at reviews, Neoteric is the only one that doesn’t have a single negative review.
  Hovercraft Business opportunity Hovercraft dealer, Hovercraft reviews, Sell hovercraft
February, 2014 Neoteric supplies to Puerto Rico its first Hovercraft Golf Cart. It was purchased by the owner of the Serralles Distillery, the largest rum producer in Puerto Rico, who also owns hotels with golf courses.
  Also in February, Neoteric President Chris Fitzgerald travels to Hanoi, Viet Nam to conduct flight training to first responders from Viet Nam’s National Department of Rescue and Relief on their two new Neoteric rescue hovercraft. Watch the video …
  Rescue Hovercraft video First responders Flight training Flood rescue equipment Hovercraft pilot training Flight training Tuyet NGA Hanoi Viet Nam hovercraft
March, 2014 Snohomish County Fire District’s two Neoteric hovercraft enable first responders to navigate the dismal search conditions after the Oso, Washington mudslide. Even rescuers are having to be rescued after becoming stuck up to their armpits in mud. But the hovercraft are able to fly across the mud and debris – keeping first responders above the danger rather than mired within it. Full story with photos …
  In March, Dan Brown, an optometrist from Olney, IL, trades the Hovertechnics hovercraft he’s owned for 15 years, but rarely used, on a new Neoteric HoverTrek. After his flight training, he says, “Compared to my old one, the difference was like night and day! The reverse thrust is definitely a big difference. And this is just a much lighter craft.Full story with video …
  Hovertechnics Hovercraft Neoteric HoverTrek Used Hovercraft trade-ins Flight training Light hovercraft video
  And in March, Technotek Polska, Neoteric’s hovercraft dealer in Poland, is actively engaged in demonstrating the hovercraft’s value in rescue operations to fire departments and other rescue agencies throughout Poland – and their response has been extremely positive. Photo gallery …
April, 2014 Four Major Generals from the Saudi Arabia Ministry of Interior visit Neoteric to take a test flight and explore the use of Neoteric hovercraft for swiftwater flood rescue operations in Saudi Arabia. Full story with photos …
  Image Flood rescue hovercraft swiftwater rescue Saudi Arabia Ministry of Interior Water rescue vehicles
  And in April, Wylie Fire Department’s Neoteric hovercraft is the only vehicle able to rescue a Texas man stuck in mud after being thrown from a bridge.
  Photo Rescue hovercraft Mud Rescue vehicle Wylie Fire Department Texas hovercraft
  Also in April, Larry Borland, a retired farmer from North Dakota, undergoes flight training at Hovercraft Training Centers in his new Neoteric HoverTrek.
  Picture hovercraft Flight Training Hovercraft Training Centers
May, 2014 Indiana Outdoor Adventures, a TV program broadcast to more than 44 million households across the U.S., airs an episode devoted exclusively to Neoteric Hovercraft. Watch the full episode …
  Video hovercraft Indiana Outdoor Adventures episodes Neoteric HoverTrek
  And in May, Neoteric customer Gary Meyers and his hovercraft (named "Neo") are filmed to star in an upcoming episode of NatGeo TV's None of the Above with the popular British host Tim Shaw - to be aired in 170 countries in 45 languages. Watch a video from the filming in at Lake Las Vegas in Henderson, Nevada …
  Hovercraft video NatGeo TV None of the Above Tim Shaw National Geographic
June, 2014 Neoteric designs a customized hovercraft for Tetra Tech, a global consulting and engineering firm with 330 offices worldwide. The hovercraft’s first project will be surveying over fragile coral reefs in the Caribbean in search of military MEC/UXO (Munitions & Explosives of Concern/Unexploded Ordnance). Tetra Tech’s Senior Geophysicist says, “The hovercraft is for going places you can’t go with conventional craft, places that are too shallow for a boat, places you can’t walk. We try to push it to the next level so we can go places other people can’t go, and where sensitive habitat is only inches below the water surface.”
  Image commercial hovercraft Tetra Tech Custom hovercraft for munitions detection vehicles
August, 2014 ESPN comes to Neoteric to film a special feature of NASCAR driver Ricky Stenhouse participating in a hovercraft race on Lazy L Lake, sponsored by Coca-Cola’s Nos Energy Drink. Other hovercraft pilots included Danica Patrick’s father T.J. Patrick, the Terre Haute Coca-Cola distributor and two Nos fans who won the chance to participate. Watch the video …
  Hovercraft Video Ricky Stenhouse NASCAR Hovercraft race Danica Patrick T.J. Patrick
September, 2014 The Environmental & Engineering Geophysical Society’s publication, FastTIMES publishes an article about the use of Neoteric hovercraft in the detection of unexploded ordnance over shallow coral reefs in the Caribbean Sea. Read the article …
  Hovercraft news FastTIMES Environmental Engineering Geophysical Society Ordnance detection hovercraft
October, 2014 D&T Landscaping purchases two customized Neoteric hovercraft to use for dust suppression at a major taconite mining region on the Mesabi Iron Range in Minnesota. Owner David Olson says, “We needed something different. We use tractors and piston bullies, but they don’t work well in a soft environment. The surface here is like quicksand – you can’t stand or walk on it.” See videos and photos …
  Photos hovercraft videos Taconite mining dust suppression vehicles Mesabi Iron Range Minnesota mining vehicles
  Also in October, NBC-2 TV airs a feature titled “Neoteric Hovercraft: A Hidden Treasure.” Watch the video …
  Hovercraft video NBC Neoteric Hovercraft news
November, 2014 Retired airline pilot builds his own hovercraft from a Neoteric Partially-Assembled Hovercraft Kit. Bill Holzgrove says, “Originally I was considering an airboat, but it’s too tall for the bridges on the river where I live, but a will go under them with no problem. And I live in Minnesota, so there are lakes everywhere. In the spring and fall, when the water’s going through the transition, I’ll be the only guy out there!”
  Image Neoteric Hovercraft kit Partially assembled hovercraft Build hovercraft DIY
December, 2014 Two Neoteric Hovercraft Golf Carts star in the Cleveland Browns-Cincinnati Bengals halftime show at FirstEnergy Stadium. The Wall Street Journal reports, “At halftime, people in pink bunny costumes raced hovercraft on the field. This was the highlight of the afternoon.Full story with photos …
  Photo hovercraft golf cart halftime show FirstEnergy Stadium Cleveland Browns
  Also in December, Shaw Couevas opens a tourism business, Southern Hovercraft, in New Orleans with his 6-passenger Neoteric HoverTrek. He says, “I think hovercraft are a new and exciting way to get customers out there and experience the wildlife. I called Neoteric because it seems to be the best on the market and because the Hoverclub of America recommended Neoteric,”
  Picture Hovercraft tourism business Neoteric 6 passenger hovercraft
January, 2015 Hydro International, the global magazine for hydrography, publishes an article featuring Neoteric and the custom hovercraft produced for Tetra Tech. This is an “environmentally sensitive survey platform”  that allows data collection in shallow water with protected species where “previously only more expensive, less sensitive aircraft-based systems were able to perform.Read the full article …
  Image hovercraft environmentally sensitive survey vehicle Hydro International
  Also in January, NBC-2 News airs a video of an ice rescue practice for the Perry Clear Creek, White River and Hazleton Fire Departments and their Neoteric rescue hovercraft. Watch the video …
February, 2015 The Napoleon, Ohio Fire Department’s Neoteric hovercraft rescues not only a family stuck in a boat on the Maumee River – they also rescue the first responders whose boats became stuck or damaged in the shallow water. Watch the ABC News video …
  Video Hovercraft water rescue first responders Napoleon Ohio Fire Department Neoteric rescue hovercrafts
  And in February, Michigan’s North Muskegon Fire Department, which has utilized Neoteric rescue hovercraft for three decades, hosted an inaugural statewide Ice Rescue Conference and Education Day, attended by numerous fire and rescue departments and the U.S. Coast Guard. North Muskegon’s newest Neoteric HoverTrek performed ice rescue demonstrations and their original craft from 1985 was on display. Watch the news video …
  Video Hovercraft ice rescue North Muskegon Fire Department Neoteric hovercraft
  Also in February, WOTV 4 Women, an ABC-affiliated TV station in Battle Creek, Michigan, broadcasts a program about Neoteric Hovercraft. Amanda, the host of the daily program Where You Live, learns to pilot a Neoteric HoverTrek on ice and films it for her show. Watch the full episode …
  Video Hovercraft on ice WOTV 4 Women Where You Live

In February, in order to offer even more direct, personal service to our customers across the world, Neoteric Hovercraft, Inc. made the decision to suspend Neoteric dealerships until further notice. This will further enhance our service by allowing all customers to work directly with top personnel at Neoteric’s headquarters.

March, 2015 Global News broadcasts a feature about Moncton Fire Department’s preparation to rescue snowmobiles in Canada with their Neoteric hovercraft. Watch the video …
  Global News Hovercraft feature video Moncton Fire Department Canada Neoteric Rescue hovercraft
  Also in February, the Onset Fire Department in Wareham, Massachusetts uses their Neoteric Hovercraft Workhouse to rescue 10 deer after they fell through the ice into the Atlantic Ocean. Built in 1990, their hovercraft illustrates the longevity of Neoteric products. Watch the video …
  Hovercraft Deer Rescue video Atlantic Ocean Onset Fire Department
April, 2015 Fox 13 TV in Salt Lake City, Utah, broadcasts a feature about the Neoteric rescue hovercraft operated by the Davis County Sheriff’s Department. For three years their hovercraft has saved lives in an area covered by the Great Salt Lake, and when the water is low it leaves miles of mudflats boats can't reach. Watch the video …
  Image Rescue hovercraft Neoteric Great Salt Lake mudflats Hovercraft mud rescue vehicle
  In April, Neoteric recreational hovercraft are well-represented at the Lake Havasu, Arizona HoverFest, a part of the Lake Havasu Boat Show, one of the premiere boat shows in the Southwest USA. Watch the hovercraft in action …
  Hovercraft events HoverFest Lake Havasu Boat Show Neoteric recreational hovercraft
  And in April, North Muskegon Fire Department’s Neoteric rescue hovercraft rescues five fishermen from an ice-covered lake in Michigan. Fire Chief Steve Lague reports, “Our hovercraft have saved more lives than all our fire engines combined. Since 1985, more than 255 people have been rescued from Muskegon area lakes using the hovercraft. More than half of them would have drowned not having the hovercraft as a safe rescue tool.”
  Neoteric Hovercraft rescues ice fisherman Safe rescue tool
  Also in April, the Viet Nam People’s Army purchased two additional 6-passenger Neoteric military hovercraft. Flight Instructor Steve Stafford conducted pilot conducted pilot training for additional Army personnel on Suoi Lake at the Emergency Response Training Facility near Hanoi. Videos and photos …
  Video Hovercraft Hanoi Viet Nam People’s Army Neoteric Military hovercraft Emergency response vehicles Suoi Lake
May 2015 The Mansfield Fire Department’s Neoteric hovercraft rescues numerous victims from floodwaters after tornadoes and thunderstorms battered much of Texas. Mansfield’s Captain William Franks reports, “The benefit of having the hovercraft is we do not have to send our personnel into the water to retrieve victims. It can also hover over logs, car tires and any other debris, unlike boats, that could be a hazard in the water. A hovercraft is the answer to a faster rescue – a safer rescue.
  Photo Neoteric Hovercraft flood rescue Texas Mansfield Fire Department
  Later in May, much of Texas is still a flood disaster zone, and the death toll includes first responders and victims lost to failed rescue attempts by vehicles that can’t perform as well as hovercraft in flood rescue operations. Fortunately, several Texas fire departments operate Neoteric rescue hovercraft. Watch a CBS news report showing Wylie Fire-Rescue saving a woman trapped on her submerged car …
  Video Hovercraft flood rescue vehicle Wylie Fire-Rescue Texas flooding
July, 2015 Neoteric President Chris Fitzgerald participates in Hover for Hunger, a unique 500 mile journey up the Wabash River to raise funds for charities that combat childhood hunger in Indiana. The downriver trip has been done by boat, but never by hovercraft and never upriver.
Participants come from all over the United States, and even from as far as Australia.
  Photo Neoteric Hovercraft Chris Fitzgerald Hover for Hunger Indiana Childhood hunger Wabash River
  In July, Iowa’s Council Bluffs Fire Department purchases a new 6-passenger Neoteric rescue hovercraft. Appropriately, their first responders complete flight training and learn flood rescue techniques on the Wabash River at 22.8 ft. flood stage. Full story with photos …
  Image Hovercraft rescue Flight training First responders Flood rescue techniques
August, 2015 When rescue boats were unable to reach kayakers trapped in mud, the West Islip Fire Department on Long Island, New York saved them in minutes with their Neoteric hovercraft – the only vehicle that could reach them. Read the full story …
  Neoteric Hovercraft mud rescue boats Kayaks on mud West Islip Fire Department
September, 2015 Rob Wilson, President of the Neoteric Engineering Affiliates, the Australian branch of Neoteric Hovercraft, and Technical Director for Neoteric Hovercraft, Inc. travels to the U.S. to confer with Chris Fitzgerald. Their tasks include developing a skirt testing rig, to further Yamaha engine testing and to develop an enhanced thrust and lift duct system.
  Photo Neoteric Hovercraft Australia Rob Wilson Chris Fitzgerald
October, 2015 The Neoteric Hovercraft Golf Cart is chosen to star in the premiere of an upcoming MTV program hosted by brothers Swae Lee and Slim Jimmy Brown of the popular hip hop duo Rae Sremmurd. The pilot episode was filmed at a golf course in Pasadena, California near the Rose Bowl. Full story & photo gallery …
  Image Rae Sremmard Khalif Swae Lee Brown photos Aaquil Slim Jimmy Brown Hip hop stars fly Neoteric Hovercraft golf cart MTV program
  And in October, General Motors’ GMC Certified Service features a Neoteric hovercraft in their latest TV commercial. Watch the commercial …
  Photo Neoteric hovercraft GMC TV commercial General Motors Hovercraft video
February, 2016 President Chris Fitzgerald conducted a week of flight training at Barrick Gold Corporation’s Pueblo Viejo gold, silver and copper mine in the Dominican Republic, one of the largest gold mines in the world. Their Neoteric hovercraft is the only vehicle able to travel over the hazardous sections of the mine’s five tailings ponds. It will be used for the mine’s biodiversity and environmental projects, as well as for surveying and safety & security. Full story & photo gallery …
  Image hovercraft in mining operations Pueblo Viejo
March, 2016 On the 5th, we received a phone call from Los Angles concerning a contract for 6 6 passenger police Hovercraft for Indonesia. Pilip PrzYbysz’s, Neoteric sales director visited Los Angles on 9th May 2016 to attend a presentation meeting. Then on the 22 May 22016 Filip travelled to Indonesia to secure the contract. Altogether 7 craft were shipped by container, 3 on 20th Oct, 2 on the 3 Nov and 2 on the 11 Nov 2017 and Peggy Sun and Chris Fitzgerald visited Indonesia on 15th Dec 2017 to train a large team of Police officers who had flown into Jakarta for the event.
  Again Peggy and Chris returned to Jakarta and flew onto Manado in June 2019 where a single craft was serviced and demonstrated in the sea to the Station Commander at the Manado Coastguard base . Upon returning to Jakarta several other craft were serviced, demonstrated then test flown in the sea at the Jakarta Coastguard base. During this service work and late in the evening Chris suffered a serous leg injury when egressing one of the craft. By the time he returned to the US the leg had become seriously infected.
April, 2016 Neoteric was honored to be the only rescue hovercraft exhibitor at the 2016 FDIC (Fire Department Instructor Conference), the world’s largest fire training-based conference and exhibition, held April 18-23 at the Lucas Oil Stadium and Indiana Convention Center in Indianapolis, Indiana.
  Neoteric had never consistently attended any trade shows until April 2016 when 2 Rescue Hovercraft were displayed, indoors, at the Neoteric FDIC Booth in Indianapolis, IN.. In 2018 booth displays were moved outdoors where Hovering demonstrations could be conducted every ½ Hour during showtime. Participation has continued as follows:
  2016, April 21, 22 and 23
  2017, April 27, 28 and 29th
  2018, April 25,26 and 27th Outdoor demonstrations
  2019, April 11,12 and 13th
  2020, April Cancelled due to Covid
  2021, Aug 5,6 and 7th
  2022, April 28, 29 and 30th
  2023, April 27, 28 and 29th
  Read the full story …
  2016 FDIC Neoteric Hovercraft exhibit
June, 2016 WOPR, a national water rescue agency in Poland, launched its new Neoteric hovercraft in Szczecin. Purchased from Neoteric’s dealer in Poland, Tecnotek Polska, it is the first rescue hovercraft in Szezecin and the region. “This machine can save people under the most difficult weather conditions that prevent the use of a helicopter. Regardless of the weather, our new hovercraft can fly over water, ice, mud, sand, grass or wetlands - allowing us to get to those places you can't reach either by boat or by foot," said WOPR's Jason Kleczaj. Full story & photo gallery …
  Image Water Rescue WOPR Hovercraft Poland

September, 2016

President Chris Fitzgerald conducted a week of flight training and maintenance instruction for the Pakistan Air Force at the PAF Sea Survival School in Karachi, Pakistan. The two 4-passenger Neoteric hovercraft owned by the PAF are used for security patrol along the Korangi Creek Air Force Base shoreline, which contains mudflats and mangroves that make it inaccessible to all other vehicles. Full story & photos …

  Photo Pakistan Air Force Hovercraft Neoteric
  Also in September, piloted by President Chris Fitzgerald, a Neoteric hovercraft was selected to carry the torch in the signature event of Indiana’s 200th birthday: the Indiana Bicentennial Torch Relay. Modes of transport were selected that were symbolic of the heritage and history of Indiana. As the media often report, Neoteric, with its international clientele and global reputation, has put Terre Haute, Indiana on the world map. Full story, photos, video …
  Image hovercraft Neoteric Indiana Bicentennial Torch Relay

September, 2016

Peggy Sun joined Neoteric’s team full time. In 1993 Peggy completed her master of Mechanical Engineering at Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology in Terre Haute, Indiana. For her Masters thesis she undertook a nodal vibration analysis of Neoteric’s Neova 6 V8 Chrysler 318 machinery module. In the intervening years Peggy, while working part-time, assisted Neoteric with Chinese interpretation and translation. Now Peggy is responsible for engineering technical support, Asian Sales, and supporting the president on an as needed basis.
October, 2016 Neoteric’s business in China continued to expand. In October, Neoteric’s agent, China Hai Pai Hovercraft, Ltd. – the leading hovercraft company in China – arranged for the YiWu Emergency Rescue Team to demonstrate their Neoteric hovercraft for the Vice-Minister of China’s Ministry of Civil Affairs, Mr. Gu ChaoXi, and Major General WenPing Feng, Commander of the ZheJiang Military Region of the Chinese People's Liberation Army. Full story & photo gallery …
  Photos Hovercraft Demo Chinese People’s Liberation Army
  Also in October, Yellow River Tourist Attractions in LuLiang City, Shanxi Province, China added two 6-passenger Neoteric hovercraft to the one 4-passenger Neoteric craft they already own. Two engineers from Neoteric’s agent, China Pai Hovercraft, Ltd., conducted additional training on the Yellow River, where the three hovercraft are operated for tourism. Full story with photos …
  Image Neoteric Hovercraft China tourism Yellow River Tourist Attractions
  And in October, Lockheed Martin’s new P-791 Hybrid Airship was revealed – in which Neoteric Hovercraft played an important role. In 2005, during the Airship’s development, Lockheed Martin’s test pilots came to Neoteric for flight training on a Neoteric hovercraft and to familiarize themselves with the hovercraft technology to be used in the Airship. Full story with photos …
  Photo Lockheed Martin P-791 Hybrid Airship image Hovercraft technology

November, 2016

Neoteric President Chris Fitzgerald and Vice President/Asia Peijun (Peggy) Sun traveled to China November 10-21 to visit current and future customers and to help coordinate the 2018 World Hovercraft Championship, which will take place in Taiyuan. The tour was organized by Mr. Huang of Hai Pai Hovercraft in Shanghai, Neoteric’s agent in China. Locations visited included:

Qikou, Shanxi Provence: Chris Fitzgerald took three hovercraft pilots from Yellow River Tourist Attractions on an exploratory flight in one of their two new 6-passenger Neoteric hovercraft …

  Image Hovercraft China Qikou Yellow River Tourist Attractions

Taiyuan: President Fitzgerald and Vice President Sun met with the Taiyuan Hovercraft Association, the Shanxi Chinese Arts International Exchange Co. Ltd. and the Ministry of Culture of the Peoples Republic of China to discuss the 2018 World Hovercraft Championship to be held in Taiyuan …

  Photo Hovercraft Association Taiyuan China Neoteric

Hancheng, Shaanxi Province:  A meeting was held with officials who are building the 1000+ acre Shaanxi Development Park, which will feature hovercraft rides …

  Image Hovercraft rides Shaanxi Development Park Hancheng China
  Xian, Shanxi Provence:  President Fitzgerald and Vice President Sun, both engineers, inspected two Hovertechnics hovercraft owned by Chan Ba National Park. Xian is the city where one of the greatest archeological discoveries in the world is located: the Terra Cotta Army, thousands of clay soldiers buried with China's first emperor, Qin Shi Huang Di.
  Hovercraft image Xian Chan Ba National Park
  Shanghai: Fitzgerald and Sun met with Hai Pai Hovercraft, Neoteric’s agent in China, and also visited the owner of China Hovercraft (Feilang Hovercraft), Mr. Yang.
Photo Hai Pai Neoteric Hovercraft agent ChinaFrom left: Neoteric VP/Asia Peggy Sun, Neoteric Agent Mr. Huang, Neoteric President Chris Fitzgerald, Interpreter Ms. Eliza, and Hai Pai Chief Engineer Mr. Lu.   Picture Feilang Hovercraft China
From left: Feilang Hovercraft Senior Engineer Mr. Liu, Neoteric President Chris Fitzgerald, and Feilang President Terry Yang.
  Yi Wu: A meeting took place with officials from the Yi Wu Volunteer Fire Rescue Organization, which operates a Neoteric rescue hovercraft. The government has deemed the organization an example for other cities in the province to emulate.
Neoteric Hovercraft image Yi Wu Fire Rescue Organization China Chris Fitzgerald reviews pre-flight inspection procedures with Yi Wu Fire Rescue team members prior to launching their Neoteric hovercraft.   Photo Chris Fitzgerald Neoteric Hovercraft China Yi Wu Chief of Police Mr. Fung and Chris Fitzgerald shake hands after a productive day with the Yi Wu Fire Rescue Organization.
  Beijing: Chris Fitzgerald and Peggy Sun had a productive meeting with Globeez Fire Technology Co. Ltd., a rescue equipment distributor who is interested in representing Neoteric Hovercraft throughout China.
Image Globeez Fire Technology China Beijing Chris Fitzgerald meets with Patty Wong from Globeez Fire Technology Co. Ltd.
January, 2017 Neoteric purchased, Hovertechincs II, LLC, formally known as Hovertechnics Inc, from Mike Kohler located in Benton Harbor Michigan. In the same month Neoteric incorporated Hovertechnics LLC in Indiana. Due to excessively high operating costs the Benton Harbor facility was closed and moved to Neoteric’s headquarters in Terre Haute, Indiana during Sep of 2019.
Hovertechnics Front   Hovertechnics Inside
February, 2017 Neoteric hovercraft were the star attraction at Canada’s Voyageur Winter Carnival at Fort William Historical Park in Thunder Bay, Ontario, one of the largest living history attractions in North America, bringing visitors from all over the world. Full story with photos …
  : Image Neoteric Hovercraft rides Voyageur Winter Carnival Fort William Historical Park
April, 2017 For the second year in a row, Neoteric and Hovercraft Training Centers were featured as the only rescue hovercraft exhibitor at FDIC (Fire Department Instructor’s Conference), the world’s largest fire training-based conference and exhibition. FDIC 2017 had a record-breaking turnout of 33,979 attendees from 58 nations – the largest FDIC in history. Full story with photos & video …
  FDIC 2017 Neoteric Rescue hovercraft image
May, 2017 Neoteric President Chris Fitzgerald and Steve Stafford traveled to Guanajuato, Mexico to conduct a week of flight training and maintenance instruction for 20 officers and cadets from Seguridad de Guanajuato, the state security force. The force’s two new Neoteric hovercraft will be used to patrol Lake Yuriria, even when the lake is covered with water lily growth that prevents access by any other watercraft. Full story with photos …
  Image Hovercraft Drug enforcement Mexico Seguridad de Guanajuato Lake Yuriria
22 July, 2019 "Aaron Needs A Job" Full story with photos …
23 October, 2019 Shipped 6-passenger military craft to Yoshine Helicopters Co. Ltd, Taiwan for Taiwan Navy mine laying operations study in shallow water.
  Yoshine Taiwan
14 November, 2019 Troy Henderson contacted Neoteric and wanted to surprise his father with a Hovercraft for his 80th birthday. His father is Dr. Robert Henderson of Lancaster, South Carolina who is the founder of Nutramax Laboratories.
  On 27th Feb 202 Steve Stafford delivered a 4 passenger craft with combination seating and Trained Dr Henderson as soon as the surprise was over. Read the full story …

As the original light hovercraft manufacturer, Neoteric moves into its seventh decade as one of a very few hovercraft manufacturers in history with 60 years of experience and expertise. In addition to its manufacturing and engineering experience, Neoteric has trained and certified rescue, recreational, commercial and military hovercraft pilots during that time. Neoteric’s exclusive Hovercraft Pilot Training program is the most comprehensive light hovercraft pilot training course available.

As an ambiguous testament to the one-of-a-kind engineering and design of the Hovercraft, Neoteric has in recent years been exploited by individuals/companies intent upon committing industrial espionage and theft of trade secrets in order to counterfeit Neoteric’s patented and trademarked designs. Of great concern is the fact that hovercraft are increasingly utilized in rescue operations; counterfeit rescue hovercraft pose a threat to the lives of first responders and to the lives of those they are tasked to save. With assistance from Federal and international agencies, Neoteric and the World Hovercraft Organization continue to prosecute and attempt to put a halt to such unlawful offenses.

Neoteric Hovercraft are not mass-produced; each craft is custom manufactured by hand. As factory production increases, Neoteric must strive to maintain this hands-on attention and, at the same time, increase manufacturing efficiency. Much of Neoteric’s engineering effort over the past several years has been devoted to this challenge. The technology section of the Neoteric website describes this process in greater detail, with photos.

Also on the technology front, Neoteric engineering team Rob Wilson and David Atkins, both founding members of the company, continue their work in Australia on the new high speed two-person performance hovercraft with the goal of establishing the World Speed Record for light hovercraft. This goal will be accomplished by reintroducing Neoteric technology that was actually conceived during the early 1970s.

A Photo History of Neoteric Hovercraft, 2020-Current

January, 2020
Jan and Feb Neoteric’s Vice President of Engineering Rob Wilson visited from Neoteric Australia to assist with technical support during the construction of two 12 passenger Hovertechnics HT2000 Rescue craft built for customer in China.
HT2000   HT2000
June, 2020

Elizabeth Slifkin contacted us from Space X in CA looking for various Hovercraft. Ryan Santo from Space X in TX contacted us again on the 13th May 2021 to arrange an on-site demo to various local government agents. Because Starbase is located inside a state park with sensitive terrain, the authorities will not allow any tracked, wheeled or airboat vehicles to operate because of the damage they cause to the sensitive terrain.

Space X decided to investigate hovercraft. Chris and Myall Hawkins using Myall’s 6-passenger Neoteric rescue craft from Houston performed a demonstration on the 7th of Oct 2021 at Starbase in Boca Chica, TX.

Park Rangers, Sheriffs, Police Departments, and Nature Resource and Wildlife officers attended as they wanted to evaluate terrain damage cause by the hovercraft. Following a successful demonstration, the authorities unanimously agreed to authorize the unlimited use of hovercraft and shortly thereafter on the 13th of October 2021, Neoteric shipped a 6-passenger craft with cabin to be used for remediation at the Starbase. This location has perfect terrain for hovercraft use.

  FDIC 2017 Neoteric Rescue hovercraft image
8 March, 2021

Charlie Pennachio who is a TV Show producer contacted us wanted to do an episode about hovercraft. Our customer Phil Yastrow agreed to participate in filming shoot for Big Kenny’s Crank It Up Garage which premiered on Thursday, 8 July 2021 on Circle TV.

Neoteric Hovercraft Golf Cart on “Big Kenny’s Crank It Up Garage”Full story with photos …

September, 2021 Development of Briggs & Stratton Powered 4 cycle 40 HP 2-passenger entry level craft. To date project has involved 1967 man hours and $23,000 in materials. Craft will be available in July 2023.
1 October, 2021 Incorporated US Hovercraft Museum in Indiana 501©3 nonprofit charity.
25 May, 2022 Shibaura Fire Pump Company, Japan contracted to purchase a 4 passenger rescue craft, airshipped to Japan. Shibaura have applied for Neoteric Agency and Distributorship status.
13 October, 2022 Chris Fitzgerald presented a paper at a Zoom meeting on "The Light Hovercraft market" to members of the World Hovercraft Society.