A few months ago we wrote about The Transition – Terrafugia’s Flying Car and now – the world’s first flying car of the 21st century is ready for the road. Flying Car (described by the company as a roadable aircraft) has finally received regulatory clearance from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration allowing it to take the road when it hits the market next year.
Terrafugia’s Transition is the first combined flying-driving vehicle to receive such special consideration from the Department of Transportation since the Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards came into being in the 1970s,the Woburn, Massachusetts-based Terrafugia Inc. said in a statement.
Thanks to the new exemptions granted from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the vehicle can now use a polycarbonate windshield instead of those laminated safety glasses used on regular cars and special tires, allowing it to withstand the stress of landings. The Transition’s tires are rated for highway speeds and the vehicle’s weight and fit in the same classification as SUVs and light trucks, but they weigh only a fraction of other tires in its class. The exemption makes this OK.
The Transition, which has completed several successful test flights, is expected to enter production in late 2012. [Terrafugia]