Aircraft

Terrafugia flying car company bought by Chinese automaker

Terrafugia's Transition prototype in flight
Terrafugia's Transition prototype in flight
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Terrafugia's Transition prototype in flight
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Terrafugia's Transition prototype in flight

Of the various companies that are developing flying cars, US-based Terrafugia is perhaps the one that we hear about the most … and it may soon become even more well-heard-of. That's because it's just been purchased in its entirety by China's Zhejiang Geely Holding Group, for an undisclosed amount.

Geely has its hand in a lot of cookie jars. Along with making its own cars, it also owns Volvo, along with the company that manufactures London's iconic black taxis.

According to the terms of the new acquisition, Terrafugia will remain headquartered in the US, receiving research and development funding and guidance from Geely. Already, in anticipation of the takeover, Terrafugia's engineering team has been tripled in size – from 30 people to around 100 – over the past quarter-year.

"The team at Terrafugia have been at the forefront of believing in and realizing the vision for a flying car and creating the ultimate mobility solution," says Geely founder and chairman Li Shufu. "Our investment in the company reflects our shared belief in their vision and we are committed to extending our full support to Terrafugia, leveraging the synergies provided by our international operations and track record of innovation, to make the flying car a reality."

Terrafugia is currently aiming at having its first vehicle, a fixed-wing model, on the market by 2019. A VTOL (vertical take-off and landing) model is estimated to follow in 2023.

Source: Terrafugia via IEEE Spectrum

2 comments
Aussie_2017
Any 'Flying car' that needs a runway to take is faded to fail. The only way 'flying cars' will be usable is when it be VTOL and still have a good amount of fail safes, as air bags hardly will help when falling from 40mts or more. It also will need to have several sensors for when landing(VTOL)/falling to don't hit people or vehicle. What I see today, is that nearly all of those 'flying cars' are just more comfortable airplanes that you can take home from the airport.
MD
Anything which promises the improbable in probably unrealistic, and un-viable long term... A car that flies will ;most likely be rubbish at being a car and very inefficient at being an aeroplane. (money makes planes fly and cost is what keeps people grounded)...