News,  Science

World’s First Flying Car To Go On Sale Next Month

As if any proof were needed that we now live in the film Blade Runner, from next month you’ll be able to pre-order one of the world’s first flying cars.

Yep, that means that in the not-too-distant future you’ll be able to whizz around the skies, Jetson style, in a vehicle that can transform between a normal (well, as normal as it can be) road car and a flying car in less than a minute.

They’re made by a company called Terrafugia, which belongs to Volvo, and it’s called a Transition. It can fly for up to 400 miles and can reach a top speed of 200mph. That’s pretty quick, by anyone’s standards.

There’s not a definite price on it yet, but you can safely assume that if you have to ask, you probably can’t afford one.

According to Chinese news agency Xinhua, they’ll be taking pre-orders on them starting from October.

So, what can we expect from it?

Well, it’s hybrid electric powered and has all of the normal things you’d expect from a car.

That said, what it does provide that my battered Ford Fiesta doesn’t is a parachute system, fold out wings, and a ‘boost’ mode aimed at giving you a bit of extra oomph when flying.

However, one thing that it does require that my old Fiesta doesn’t is a pilot’s licence.

It’s totally road legal, but you’ll need to be allowed to fly an aeroplane to take this thing off terra firma.

With that in mind, the company that makes it believes it could be of great use to pilots who can fly it to a small airport, then simply fold the wings in and drive it home. That’s an ambitious business model. Niche doesn’t quite cover it.

However, if you are in that small group of pilots who constantly thinks “I wish I didn’t have to get out of my plane to drive home” then this is the vehicle for you.

It can get up to an altitude of around 10,000 feet and weights just 1,300lbs.

After this, there are plans for the TF-X, a four-door version that they claim won’t require an airport for take-off and landing.

They say: “The TF-X won’t require an airport for take-off and landing, and it will drive on all roads and highways – providing the convenience of true door-to-door transportation.”

Chris Jaran, Terrafugia’s CEO, said: “Developing this new technology has allowed us to test several different mechanisms and generate process improvements along the way.

“We are at the critical point where we can implement the best design features based on years of flight and drive testing.

“This will improve function, safety and aesthetics for the optimal flying and driving experience.”

Just wait until one of these falls into the wrong hands.