It’s been a dream that countless visionaries and entrepreneurs have failed to achieve. But five former graduate students from MIT are about to take wing with the world’s first flying car. Make that the first to pass muster and win the necessary approval of government regulators.
That’s been no easy task for Massachusetts-based Terrafugia which had to deal with a complex mix of occasionally conflicting automotive and aircraft regulations. But their Transition 2-seater, which took its maiden flight two weeks ago, is ready to go into production, with sales set to begin about a year from now.
The company claims it has already taken 100 advance orders – but it’s looking to line up more with a display at the 2012 New York Auto Show, where it is competing for attention alongside more conventional automobiles, like the new Toyota Avalon and the reborn SRT Viper.
“Don’t think of it as a car that flies,” suggested Carl Dietrich, one of the MIT students who is now serving as Terrafugia’s CEO. “Think of it as a plane that drives.”