Finally: Flying Cars

Terrafugia's Transition, a street-legal flying car.

We’ve previously discussed the noticeable lack of flying cars in the 21st Century, despite promises made by decades of science fiction films and cartoons. Magnetic levitation may hold some promise in delivering high-style transportation, but in the meantime at least two companies have come up with car/plane/helicopter hybrids that do, indeed, fly.

First up: Terrafugia, which successfully completed a test flight of its Transition Street-Legal Airplane, a two-seat vehicle with folding wings that can be driven on a highway and flown using standard unleaded gasoline.

In the recent test flight, the car was fueled at a gas station, driven to an airport and reached an altitude of 1,400 ft. for around 8 minutes. The Woburn, MA-based company is accepting $10,000 deposits for the vehicle, which will sell for $279,000 once the company completes six more phases of flight testing.

The PAL-V converts from car to gyrocopter.

Meanwhile, in the Netherlands, PAL-V expects to make its Personal Air and Land Vehicle (PAL-V) available to drivers/pilots in 2014. The vehicle is a gyrocopter that can fly up to 315 miles at an altitude of 4,000 ft. On land, the blades can be tucked away, turning it into a street-legal three-wheeled car. Expect to pay around $330,000 to $400,000 to take one home.

According to the company, the PAL-V took its maiden flight at a Dutch Air Force base last month.

I’m still waiting on a car that levitates, but these car/plane hybrids will do for now. Perhaps some day this concept can be combined with Germany’s delightful Amphicar, and we can have a flying car that also floats?

You can see videos of both test flights below:

Source: Terrafugia and Print Friendly

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