Terrafugia have announced that they will start making deliveries of their “Transition” roadable plane as early as late next year for $194,000 (£127,000). The Transition will be first to market, ahead of the impressive Moller M400 Skycar which won’t be available until around 2015. Both vehicles will require a pilots license to fly, however.
Terrafugia’s Transition is classed as a Light-Sport Airplane and uses a folding-wing design instead of hovering thrusters. This makes take-offs a little less spontaneous as it requires a short runway to get airborne. The 19-foot-long fuselage/chassis is powered by a 100HP Rotax 912S Four-Stroke engine, will have a cruise speed of 115mph (185km/h) and a range of 460 miles (740km).
Gross take-off weight is 1,320lbs (600kg) and on the ground you can expect to achieve highway speeds, though the fuel economy might not be great with the drag from the folded wing.
The craft will run on regular unleaded, which can be obtained whilst in driving mode through any gas station. It is not designed to be a car replacement, though you’d certainly get some attention if you did use it as such.
Check out the videos below for a walkthrough of the Transition. The first is more current, shot in October by the Boston Sunday Globe while the second provides more details, shot back in July by AVweb from AirVenture 2008.