Major milestone takes “flying car” closer to first delivery
April 10, 2012
Developed by Terrafugia, the “Transition” is a two-seater personal aircraft/car hybrid that can drive on roads and highways, park in a single car garage, and fly with unleaded petrol. This light sport, roadable aircraft has been under development since 2006. It is now a significant step closer to becoming a commercial reality, after the production prototype completed its first test flight at New York’s Plattsburgh International Airport.
It is the first vehicle in the world to have met both the standards of the FAA (Federal Aviation Administration) and the NHTSA (National Highway Traffic Safety Administration), making it the first “street legal aeroplane”.
The Transition’s first flight reached an altitude of 426m (1400 ft) above the ground and lasted eight minutes while staying in the vicinity of the airport. During this time, it demonstrated the controllability and safe operational characteristics of the aircraft. Six phases of flight testing are planned to continue development and demonstrate compliance to the Light Sport Aircraft standards.
The production prototype is on display at the New York International Auto Show until 15th April. Initial customer deliveries are expected in 2013, with a price tag of US$279,000.