Terrafugia, a company whose name comes from the latin for “Escape the Earth,” has been developing a street-legal airplane. If you’ll stop to think for a minute, a street-legal airplane is a flying car. This company is making a flying car. They’ve promised it will hit the market in 2016. The first prototype the company offered was called The Transition, which runs on premium unleaded automotive gas. The Transition is a hybrid car/plane, which means it has glass cockpit avionics, a carbon fiber body, and stick and rudder pedals, but it also has a steering wheel and gas and brake pedals. Apparently, switching between airplane and car is “as easy as putting down the top on your convertible.”
The follow-up to The Transition is the TF-X, which actually looks much cooler than its predecessor.
According to the company, you can learn to operate the TF-X in about five hours and it can fly in either manual or automatic modes.
The TF-X can carry four people and offers a non-stop range of 500 miles. Plus, it fits into a standard garage and can be driven on roads and highways.
It’s a fixed wing aircraft that can be operated by anyone with the right credentials and can fly and land at any approved landing zone. You can also charge the batteries via the engine or an electric car outlet. If you’re looking to buy, you’re out of luck. Development is scheduled to take eight to twelve years. You can, however, purchase The Transition, starting in 2016.
Filed Under: Aerospace + defense