The Terrafugia Transition is a unique vehicle, designed to cruise down the highway as well soar into the open skies. A flying car may be convenient for some pilots, but the concept is subject to numerous approvals from various government regulators. Aside from needing approvals from the FAA, the Transition has just received a roadworthiness sign-off from the U.S. DOT’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).
The NHTSA granted the Transition exemptions for missing airbags, no electronic stability system, and the plane’s polycarbonate windows, which are far lighter than automotive safety glass.
“We want it to be as comfortable a driving experience as any car and as comfortable a flying experience,” said Transition engineer Marc Stiller. “That’s the end goal. The fact that the Transition is also designed for the road means we had to make the ground handling very, very car like.”
When fully fueled, the Transition can carry 330 pounds, including passengers, and achieve 35 miles per gallon on the highway. A stylish combination of light airplane and car, the Transition can be driven home after taking to the sky, which makes a trailer or hangar unnecessary. There’s even room for golf clubs in the cargo area.
Roughly 100 aircraft have been reserved thus far, representing an order backlog of over $25 million. Each plane can be had for around $250,000. Terrafugia hopes to move forward with production later this year, finally bringing the flying car concept to reality.
Check out the company’s flying car in action below.