The future of flying cars is closer than you think, and Terrafugia is willing to take us there! Funny name you say? It is derived from Latin, meaning “escape the Earth.” Fitting to say the least.
Terrafugia is set to release a car-plane hybrid by the name of The Transition which will be a fuel efficient transforming plane. That is correct. You will be able to drive your Transition from your house to the nearest run-way and simply lift off into the the skies!
How you ask? The wings of the flying car fold up on the side, transforming the vehicle into a regular 23 gal, 35 mpg, 100 hp, compact automobile. And when you are ready to hit the skies you will be cruising at a steady speed of 100 mph with a flight range of 410 miles. All for the low price of $279,000. While that price may seem steep to some, it is as with all things that enter the market as a new technology: eventually the price of flying cars will come down to a more reasonable and affordable six figure price tag.
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The great thing about Terrafugia is they also have a commercial flying car in the works. While the Transition is set to come out in 2015, they have planned another model flying car by the name of TF-X (released in 8-12 years). The TF-X will be a smaller, safer, road oriented version of the Transition. Not to mention it will have a sophisticated auto pilot:
- TF-X™ vehicles will be capable of automatically avoiding other air traffic, bad weather, and restricted and tower-controlled airspace.
- If the operator becomes unresponsive, TF-X™ will automatically implement an emergency auto-land at the nearest airport.
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There are however a couple of setbacks, as with any new invention. The flying car will likely run into road blocks (why not just fly over them…) from the political side of things; weight restrictions, flight allowance, zone restrictions, and licence requirements. Currently, with a petition already submitted, Terrafugia is still a long way away before getting government support and clearing all the speed bumps ahead (again… just fly why don’t you, you have a flying car!). Most of these policies and restrictions will be upheld with public safety in mind, but there will unfortunately be opposition from the greedy side of politics.
All shall be unveiled in the next couple of years, and if everything goes accordingly, we should be able to fly out of traffic jams in the next decade or so. Flying cars will guide us to a brave new world. Imagine: no more close calls with black ice (preaching to the choir of current weather hazard victims). No more long, windy roads up a mountain with no support in order to get to a camping spot in Virginia. No more dangerous flooded areas one might get stuck in after intense rainfalls. Flying cars have the potential to provide us with all of this in the near and plausible future too!
Cheers to the Jetsons, and to a world of flying cars!
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