Flying Car Gets FAA Approval

Despite countless small companies trying to develop a flying car in the past several decades, we still have yet to see them take over our airspace.

But the latest design from Massachusetts-based Terrafugia, the maker of flying aircraft cars, may be the one to get the green light.

According to the company, when the TF-X finally gets through production and development in eight to 12 years, Transition owners will be the first ones lucky enough to get behind the driver’s seat.

This street legal, plug-in hybrid car will have collapsible wings, retractable propellers, be fuel-efficient and will be able to fly and rive all on its own, especially in the event of an emergency. The vehicle will seat four and its electric engine can be recharged mid-air or plugged into a charging station on the ground. Terrafugia says it will also have electric power assist for takeoff and landing.

Other awesome features include a non-stop flight range of at least 500 miles, a parachute system and the potential to automatically avoid other air traffic, bad weather and restricted, tower-controlled airspace.

CEO Carl Dietrich says that the vehicle promises to not only revitalize under-utilized regional airports, but also alleviate traffic congestion. Earlier this year, the Federal Aviation Authority (FAA) finally classified the car as a Light-Sport Aircraft, which means drivers would not need to get a pilot’s license to operate it.

Terrafugia indicated that learning how to safely operate the TF-X will take the average person five hours.