We’ve seen them in The Jetsons, we’ve seen them in Back to the Future, we’ve seen them in Blade Runner — so when are we going to see them in the real world? Flying cars have been one of the cornerstones of sci-fi visions of the future for decades, and while we’ve been getting closer to other sci-fi wish list items like robots and AI, it doesn’t seem like we’re getting any closer to cruising to work at low altitudes.
That doesn’t mean no one’s trying! Today, the owners of Volvo, Zhejiang Geely, announced that they’ve acquired Terrafugia. Since 2009, Terrafugia has been working on making flying cars a reality, and to some extent, they’ve succeeded! Their first product, the $279,000 Transition, was a small airplane with wings that could be folded up to make it legal to drive on the road.
But, when we think of flying cars, we don’t think of things that look like airplanes. Their latest project, the TF-X, is what Volvo’s owners are probably more intrigued by. The TF-X can take off and land vertically, and is being planned as an all-electric vehicle that makes a minimal amount of noise.
Now that Terrafugia is part of Zhejiang Geely, they’re going to have a whole lot more money to play with. That means both companies are going to be getting very serious about developing flying cars, but they aren’t the only ones!