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Posts Tagged ‘flying flivver’

Volvo Parent Geely Buys Flying Car Start-up Terrafugia

Flying car race heating up fast.

by on Jul.05, 2017

Looking like the flying car in "Back to the Future," a rendering shows the Terrafugia Transition in flight.

The long-held dream of building a flying car may be coming a big step closer to reality now that Geely, the deep-pocket parent of Volvo Cars has acquired Terrafugia, a start-up launched by a group of MIT alum.

Among an assortment of companies hoping to build flying cars, Terrafugia is one of the furthest along, with the Massachusetts-based firm already going airborne with prototype designs. More importantly, the Terrafugia Transition last year won a critical certification from the Federal Aviation Administration that would make it easier for owners to take to the air.

Take Wing!

Funding from Zhejiang Geely could be what’s needed to push Terrafugia over the top, especially as it now faces a range of competitors hoping to take off with their own flying car and flying taxi concepts. That includes Slovakian start-up AeroMobil and Germany’s Lilium, as well as aerospace giant Airbus. Even Uber wants to get into the act, the car-sharing service recently announcing plans to take its operation airborne with a concept it has dubbed Uber Elevate.

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Toyota Could Take to the Air – Starting with 2020 Tokyo Olympics

Automaker looking at “aerial solutions,” along with number other winged hopefuls.

by on Jun.05, 2017

The Cartivator briefly takes to the air.

Already the world’s largest automotive manufacturer, Toyota might soon dominate personal transportation on the ground – and in the air.

The industry giant is lending its support to a small Japanese tech firm, Cartivator Resource Management, that is developing a single-seat flying car it hopes to have ready to demonstrate in time for the opening ceremonies at the 2020 Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games, a company spokesman confirmed. Longer-term, Toyota itself is looking at what it describes as “aerial solutions.”

We'll Lift You Up!

“Is Toyota planning to make a business out of flying cars?” the company asked of itself in a statement provided to TheDetroitBureau.com. “We are advancing broad research and development on ways of transportation, including aerial solutions,” it continued, adding “Such efforts are only in the very-early stages, and nothing has been decided yet about commercialization.”

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Has the Era of Flying Cars and Cabs Finally Arrived?

A fantasy since Henry Ford’s Flying Flivver.

by on Apr.24, 2017

The Aeromobil Flying Car is shown here with its wings open and ready for take-off.

It’s long been the stuff of science fiction, a fantasy that confounded even automotive pioneer Henry Ford, but a Slovakian start-up company says it is now taking orders for what could become the world’s first flying car – if it meets its delivery target of 2020.

Another European start-up, meanwhile, is pitching its own new craft as the world’s first flying taxi, a five-seater that can hover like a drone and fly like a jet.

Flight of Fancy!

Slovakia’s AeroMobil and Germany’s Lilium are just two of the many companies now working up ways to combine the best aspects of the automobile and the airplane. They include a number of start-ups as well as more traditional manufacturers like Airbus which is hoping to start testing a prototype of its own, single-seat flying car sometime this year.

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Jetsons’ Flying Car Closer to Reality

Terrafugia Transition flying car could be roadworthy – and airborne – by 2012.

by on Jul.06, 2011

Come Josephine in my flying (and driving) machine, as the Terrafugia Transition comes closer to reality.

It’s been a fantasy for more than a century. Even Henry Ford hoped to find a way to get one of his early flivvers to fly, but after countless failures it may soon become a reality.

Federal regulators have approved a series of exemptions that could get the Terrafugia Transition off the drawing boards and into production as early as 2012.

Designers have equipped the car/plane hybrid with a variety of automotive safety features, including airbags, that typically aren’t offered by most private aircraft.  The challenge has been to overcome some automotive standards that don’t quite work when your car is sprouting wings.  So exemptions from certain rules, such as side-impact standards, had to be authorized by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

Your Workhorse News Source!

That challenge resolved, Woburn, Massachusetts-based Terrafugia plans to have at least one production prototypes on display later this month at the EAA AirVenture, the annual “fly-in” at Oshkosh, Wisconsin that draws pilots and flying fans from around the world.

“The vehicle will not be ready to fly” at the show, as originally promised, noted a statement from the start-up aircraft maker’s CEO Carl Dietrich.  “The first test flights would be expected in March of next year,” due to a number of other delays Terrafugia blames on its suppliers.

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