It's hard to forget a company like Terrafugia – mostly because it won't let us. Every six months or so, the Massachusetts-based self-proclaimed aerospace company makes headlines with a flying car concept. It's first attempt, called the Transition, was a folding low-wing propeller-driven pusher aircraft with a water-cooled combustion engine. Despite its ungainliness, it has flown, but only in prototype form, and despite its long gestation period and a reported 100 reservations on the books, certification and production is moving at a snail's pace.
Yet push those negative thoughts aside and make room in your fantasy warehouse for Terrafugia's followup act, a vertical-takeoff (VTOL) plug-in hybrid-electric flying car. Promised to be much more advanced than its predecessor, the all-new TF-X would be fitted with modern state-of-the-art intelligent systems and fly-by-wire controls, says the company. Its design, with vertical take-off transitioning into horizontal flight, would provide safe, simple and convenient autonomous flight that would help alleviate today's congestion and other transportation challenges.
Rather than dwell on the implications of electric range-anxiety while cruising at 20,000 feet with your family on board, or how you will prevent your inattentive friends from walking into its low-slung whirling rotors, open your mind and watch the company's computer-generated video down below showing how a typical flight would theoretically unfold.