We have been following the story about Terrafugia’s Transition flying car for some time now and to briefly update progress: On March 23, the first production prototype flew from Plattsburgh International to reach an altitude of 1400-feet and the flight lasted eight minutes plus the Transition itself is now on display at the New York International Auto Show from April 6 to 15 at the Jacob Javits Convention Center in New York City as shown in this recent Wall Street Journal video segment:
However, a recent article in Popular Mechanics outlined several reasons why you should not expect to have a flying car in your garage any time soon. Specifically, the article noted:
- It will be hard to produce for the advertised price.
- Its certification standard will require significant performance restrictions.
- The light aircraft market is extraordinarily tough.
- Its legal future is cloudy.
- Design compromises will take a serious toll on performance.
- Roadability’s benefits don’t outweigh its penalties.
- Past precedents are not encouraging.
The Popular Mechanics article concluded that while Terrafugia has created is an “admirable execution” of the flying car concept, they are simply still too costly and impractical to be anything more than a novelty for the foreseeable future.
Nevertheless, Terrafugia itself seems very optimistic about the future of its flying car concept.