Home / Auto News / News article: Flying Cars One Step Closer to Reality - AutoGuide.com News
 |  Jul 06 2010, 8:43 PM

Go from the roads to the friendly skies in one fell swoop in the Terrafugia Transition roadable aircraft. The first of its kind, the Transition can make the transition from the road to the sky, offering its owners the ultimate in convenience.

And now, with a recent weight exemption approved by the Federal Aviation Administration, the Transition is one step closer to your driveway. Allowed an extra 110 pounds of weight, it has a maximum takeoff weight of 1,430 pounds. This is the same weight allowance made for aircraft designed to operate on water. It falls into the Light Sport Aircraft category, and other planes in the class are limited to a maximum takeoff weight of 1,320 pounds.

The reason for the extra weight, according to Anna Dietrich, Terrafugia’s chief operating officer, is due to its safety features. Since it’s designed to be on the road, it’s going to need equipment not found in other light aircraft. These features include a protective safety cage, airbags and an energy absorbing crumple zone.

Planes that hold the light sport aircraft designation can carry two people, and the pilot has to have a Sport Pilot certificate, which requires 20 hours of flight training. “There are actually programs that you can do in about two weeks,” said Dietrich. “You can take a couple weeks off of work and come home a pilot, so it’s a very accessible, very exciting way of getting into aviation and giving yourself that additional freedom and flexibility.”

Taking about the same amount of time as putting down a convertible top, the Transition goes from car to plane in mere moments, and all the magic takes place from within the cockpit. When it’s time to land and head home, the wings fold up and you drive off.

You can own the Transition for $194,000 in about 18 months, and you can bet that the commute to work will be a lot quicker.

[Source: CNN]

  • Chad

    Cool! Now where is my jet pack you old people promised my generation? :)