|Production Prototype of Terrafugia Transition at the N.Y. Int'l Auto Show in April 2012|
|First flight||March 5, 2009|
The Rotax 912ULS piston engine powered, carbon-fiber vehicle is planned to have a flight range of 425 nmi (489 mi; 787 km) using either automotive premium grade unleaded gasoline or 100LL avgas and a cruising flight speed of 93 kn (107 mph; 172 km/h). Equipment includes a Dynon Skyview glass panel avionics system, an airframe parachute, and an optional autopilot.
On the road, it can drive up to 70 miles per hour (110 km/h) with normal traffic. The Transition Production Prototype's folded dimensions of 6 ft 8 in (2.03 m) high, 7 ft 6 in (2.29 m) wide and 18 ft 9 in (5.72 m) long are designed to fit within a standard household garage. When operated as a car, the engine power take-off near the propeller engages a variable-diameter pulley CVT automatic transmission to send power to the trailing-suspension mounted rear wheels via half-shafts powering belt drives. In flight, the engine drives a pusher propeller. The Transition has folding wings and a twin tail.
Design and development
The experimental Transition Proof of Concept's first flight in March 2009 was successful and took place at Plattsburgh International Airport in upstate New York using U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) tail number N302TF. First customer delivery, as of March 2009, was originally planned to take approximately 18 months and occur in 2011.
On July 1, 2010, it was announced that the Terrafugia Transition had been granted an exemption from the FAA concerning its Maximum Takeoff Weight (MTOW), allowing the Transition to be certified with a take-off weight up to 1,430 pounds (650 kg); the limit matches the MTOW for amphibious light-sport aircraft. The extra 110 pounds (50 kg) granted by the exemption provides more weight allowance for the mandatory road safety features such as airbags and bumpers.
The proposed design of the production version was made by Danish designer Jens Martin Skibsted and his partners at KiBiSi and made public at AirVenture Oshkosh on July 26, 2010. Aerodynamic changes revealed included a new, optimized airfoil, Hoerner wingtips, and removal of the canard after it was found to have an adverse aerodynamic interaction with the front wheel suspension struts; furthermore, the multipurpose passenger vehicle classification from the NHTSA removed the requirement for a full width bumper that had inspired the original canard design.
On November 16, 2010, the U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) published Terrafugia's petition for a temporary, three-year hardship exemption from four FMVSS standards in the Transition. Terrafugia requested to use lighter weight motorcycle tires instead of RV tires, polycarbonate for the windshield and side windows, basic airbags instead of advanced, dual stage airbags and to not include an electronic stability control system. The NHTSA granted all of the requested exemptions on June 29, 2011, but limited the stability control and airbag exemptions to one year.
In June 2011, a delay was announced and Terrafugia's CEO estimated that about another 18 months would be required before first customer delivery in "late 2012", but this was not achieved. December 2011 saw the base price increase to US$279,000 from an initial price of US$194,000.
After undergoing drive tests and high-speed taxi tests, the production prototype completed its first flight on March 23, 2012, at the same airport in Plattsburgh, New York, that was used for the Proof of Concept's flight testing. The production prototype then made its auto show debut at the 2012 New York International Auto Show in April 2012.
In June 2012, Terrafugia announced that the Transition had completed the first of six phases of flight testing. By July, the second phase of testing was underway, expanding the performance envelope in the sky and continuing drive testing on the ground.
In January 2013, development continued and the company announced that it might be necessary to construct a third, completely new prototype, due to the large number of modifications required. The modifications to date are said to appear to have improved the previous handling characteristics.
By March 2014, the design of the third, updated prototype had progressed to finalization of the major structural members and a statement to investors said that it would be used in final compliance testing for certification before the first customer delivery which was then estimated to take at least another 18 months and occur "in 2015".
By April 2014, 12 two-person test flights had taken place; this was the first time that anyone other than Terrafugia's chief test pilot had flown the Transition. As of 22 August 2014[update], first customer delivery was hoped for in about 18 months "in the second quarter of 2016."
In December 2014 the company asked the FAA to allow the Transition to be operated at a gross weight of 1,800 lb (816 kg) instead of the light-sport aircraft maximum weight of 1,320 lb (599 kg) and have a stall speed of 54 kn (100 km/h; 62 mph) instead of the category maximum of 45 kn (83 km/h; 52 mph). The company indicated that the increases were required to allow inclusion of structures to meet FMVSS ground operation safety regulations. The company had previously been granted an increase in gross weight of 110 lb (50 kg) and another LSA aircraft, the ICON A5, was granted a 250 lb (113 kg) exemption to meet FAA spin resistance requirements; this new application would increase the Transition's allowed weight by a total of 480 lb (218 kg) or 36%. During consultations the request for the weight increase was supported by the General Aviation Manufacturers Association, the Experimental Aircraft Association, the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association and the Light Aircraft Manufacturers Association. Only a few individuals expressed opposition to the request. The exemption was granted by the FAA on 19 June 2016.
In April 2015 the company announced that parts were being built for the third version of the aircraft, and that current planning estimated the first customer delivery after roughly two years. Terrafugia COO/VP of Engineering Kevin Colburn also stated that the company has changed the price estimate from $279K to between $300K and $400K.
In November 2015, the company announced that the third version of the Transition was being tested with a Rotax 912is engine, rather than the Rotax 912ULS that the second prototype had flown with.
As of April 2017, the company's website says: "Today, Terrafugia is finalizing production vehicle design and compliance testing in preparation for vehicle deliveries within the next three years." 
In April 2018, the production prototype ("D2") was retired. While the original proof of concept vehicle had flown only about 8 hours in total, the production prototype had logged 212 flight hours, completing 317 takeoffs and landings.
In July 2018 the company announced a series of upgrades that will be incorporated in the production aircraft with delivery planned for July 2019. These include a hybrid-electric motor and lithium iron phosphate battery for road mode use, a Dynon electronic flight instrument system, a Ballistic Recovery Systems ballistic parachute, an inflight power boost feature, a remodeled interior, increased cargo space, improved seat belt design, airbags, plus three rearview cameras.
In January 2021, Terrafugia announced that the Transition received a Special Light-Sport Aircraft (LSA) airworthiness certificate from the FAA for the Transition to be flown only, with road use approval to follow in 2022.
In February 2021, it was reported that Terrafugia had laid off most of their employees and would close down operations in the United States later in the year, with the intention of moving to China.
- Crew: 1 pilot
- Capacity: 1 passenger
- Length: 19 ft 9 in (6.02 m)
- Wingspan: 26 ft 6 in (8.08 m)
- Height: 6 ft 6 in (1.98 m)
- Empty weight: 970 lb (440 kg)
- Max takeoff weight: 1,430 lb (649 kg) 
- Cockpit width: 48 in (1.2 m) at the shoulder
- Fuel capacity: 23 US gal (87 L; 19 imp gal), 141 pounds (64 kg)
- Length on road: 18 ft 9 in (5.72 m) with elevator up
- Width on road: 7 ft 6 in (2.29 m) with wings folded
- Height on road: 6 ft 8 in (2.03 m)
- Rear wheel drive on road
- Powerplant: 1 × Rotax 912ULS , 100 hp (75 kW) @ 5800 rpm (max. 5 minutes), 95 hp (71 kW) @ 5500 rpm (continuous)
- Propellers: 5 ft 8 in (1.73 m) diameter Proof of Concept - Prince Aircraft Company, four-bladed "P-Tip"
Production Prototype - Sensenich 3 Blade Rotax Ground Adjustable Propeller
- Maximum speed: 100 kn (115 mph, 185 km/h)
- Cruise speed: 93 kn (107 mph, 172 km/h)
- Stall speed: 54 kn (62 mph, 100 km/h) 
- Range: 425 nmi (489 mi, 787 km) - Flying; 805 mi (1,296 km; 700 nmi) - Driving
- Maximum speed on road: 70 mph (110 km/h)
- Fuel economy in cruise flight: 5 US gal (19 L) per hour, 21.4 mpg‑US (11.0 L/100 km; 25.7 mpg‑imp)
- Fuel economy on road: 35 mpg‑US (6.7 L/100 km; 42 mpg‑imp)
- Certifications: Both FAA and FMVSS certifications planned
- Dynon Avionics EFIS-D100 Electronic Flight Information System with HS34 Nav and GPS Connectivity
- Dynon Avionics EMS-D120 Engine Monitoring System
- Garmin GTX 327 Transponder
- Garmin SL30 nav/comm transceiver
- Dynon Avionics SkyView SV-D1000
- XCOM Avionics VHF Transceiver
- Transition custom touch screen dashboard computer
- Haines, Thomas B. (19 March 2009). "First roadable airplane takes flight". Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association (AOPA). Retrieved 2009-03-19.
- "FAA REGISTRY Make / Model Inquiry Results; Make/Model Code Entered: 05627LL". FAA Registry. FAA. March 7, 2014. Retrieved March 7, 2014.
- "Yahoo". yahoo.com. Retrieved 22 June 2016.
- TERRAFUGIA presentation of Transition aircraft "The Transition Archived 2010-07-24 at the Wayback Machine", 5 march 2012
- Dietrich, Anna Mracek (2011-08-11). "Transition Equipment List" (PDF). web site. Terrafugia, Inc. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2013-04-30. Retrieved April 20, 2012.
- Durbin, Dee-Ann (2012-04-02). "Flying car gets closer to reality with test flight". boston.com. Associated Press. Retrieved April 20, 2012.
- "2012 New York: Terrafugia Transition - The Plane That Drives". motortrend.com. 6 April 2012. Retrieved 22 June 2016.
- Phillips, Matt (March 18, 2009). "Flying Car Takes First Flight". The Middle Seat Terminal. The Wall St. Journal. Retrieved 2009-03-19.
- Mone, Gregory (October 2008). "The Driving Airplane Gets Real" (PDF). Popular Science. pp. 42–48. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2008-12-30. Retrieved 2009-03-20.
- "'Flying Car' Gets Big Break From FAA". CBS News. 2010-06-30. Retrieved 1 July 2010.
- "Exemption number 10072". FAA. 2010-05-27. Archived from the original (PDF) on 4 July 2010. Retrieved 9 July 2010.
- "High Design". Boing Boing. 2010-07-30. Retrieved 2019-05-15.
- ""Flying Car" Moves Closer to First Delivery". Terrafugia. 2010-07-26. Archived from the original on 7 July 2012. Retrieved 27 July 2010.
- Fast Lane to Sky High, Ansys Fluid flow simulation software co-pilots design of production prototype roadable aircraft by Gregor Cadman, Engineer, Terrafugia, Woburn, MA, USA Archived 2012-04-04 at WebCite
National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (2010-11-16). "Docket No. NHTSA–2010-0154. Terrafugia, Inc.; Receipt of Application for Temporary Exemption From Requirements for Tire Selection and Rims or Motor Vehicles FMVSS No. 110, Electronic Stability Control Systems FMVSS No. 126, Glazing Materials FMVSS No. 205, and Occupant Crash Protection FMVSS No. 208" (PDF). 75 (220). U.S. GPO. Cite journal requires
- Max Trescott (2010-11-18). "Terrafugia Roadable Aircraft Moves Closer to Reality". Experimental Aircraft Association. Archived from the original on 2010-11-24.
- Department of Transportation National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (2011-06-29). "Terrafugia, Inc.; Grant of Application for Temporary Exemption From Certain Requirements of FMVSS No. 110, Tire Selection and Rims for Motor Vehicles, FMVSS No. 126, Electronic Stability Control Systems, FMVSS No. 205, Glazing Materials, and FMVSS No. 208, Occupant Crash Protection". Federal Register. 76 (125): 38270–38279. 76 FR 38270. Retrieved 30 June 2011.
Docket No. NHTSA-2010-0154, summary of section "F. Decision" allowing:
* Use of lighter weight but equally safe motorcycle tires instead of RV tires. (three year exemption from FMVSS No. 110, S4.1 and S4.4)
* Not including an electronic stability control system because of its weight and potential to become a single point of failure that might unintentionally throttle back the engine in flight. (one year exemption from FMVSS No. 126)
* Use of lighter and stronger, but less scratch resistant, polycarbonate for the windshield and side windows in place of glass to more safely withstand bird strikes. (three year exemption from FMVSS No. 205, S5)
* Use of a single-stage air bag instead of an advanced, dual-stage air bag (one year exemption from FMVSS No. 208, S14 apart from S14.5.1(a))
- Page, Lewis, "Terrafugia flying car gets road-safety exemptions", The Register, 4 July 2011; retrieved 11 July 2011.
- Dietrich, Carl. "CEO, Terrafugia" (PDF). Terrafugia. Archived from the original (PDF) on 16 August 2011. Retrieved 30 June 2011.
- Hussey, Matt (2011-12-31). "Wait no longer: the flying car is finally ready for takeoff". Wired.co.uk. Retrieved April 4, 2012.
- Tacke, Willi; Marino Boric; et al: World Directory of Light Aviation 2015-16, page 83. Flying Pages Europe SARL, 2015. ISSN 1368-485X
- Jim Patten (25 March 2012). "Flying car road tested at Lawrence Municipal Airport". eagletribune.com. Retrieved 25 March 2012.
- "First Flight for Terrafugia". Retrieved 2 April 2012.
- "Major Milestone takes "Flying Car" Closer to First Delivery" (PDF). terrafugia.com. April 2, 2012. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2013-03-23. Retrieved April 2, 2012.
Terrafugia will continue its testing program in preparation for first delivery, which is expected to occur within the next year.
- Welsh, Jonathan (April 5, 2012). "Flying Car Maker Offers 'Show Special' Discount". Driver's Seat. Wall St. Journal. Retrieved 2012-07-30.
- "Phase 1 Flight Testing a Success for Transition Street-Legal Airplane". Terrafugia. Archived from the original on 7 July 2012. Retrieved 28 June 2012.
- Jonathan Welsh (28 June 2012). "'Flying Car' Completes First Round of Flight Tests". wsj.com. Retrieved 1 July 2012.
- "Terrafugia's Transition street-legal airplane continues flight and drive testing" (PDF). Terrafugia. Archived from the original (PDF) on 13 March 2013. Retrieved 30 July 2012.
- "Terrafugia Transition Media Update: January 2013". Terrafugia. 2013-01-21. Retrieved 16 May 2014.
- Niles, Russ (22 January 2013). "Third Version Of Terrafugia Transition?". AVweb. Retrieved 24 January 2013.
- Mark Corriere, Vehicle Engineer, Terrafugia, Inc.; Nicholas Tucker, Senior Vehicle Engineer, Terrafugia, Inc. (2014-03-06). Developing the Transition Flying Car: Using Physics-Based Simulation to Design Air-worthy Composite Structures (Webinar). Tech Briefs Media Group, an SAE International Company. 22 minutes in.
- "Terrafugia | MIT Startups - WeFunder". WeFunder startup of the week. Terrafugia. 2013-10-22. Retrieved 15 May 2014.
Delivery of the first Transition is expected in 2015. … A third prototype will incorporate those design changes and be used for final compliance testing for certification.
- "My First Flight in the Transition". Terrafugia. 22 April 2014. Archived from the original on 27 May 2014. Retrieved 27 May 2014.
- Sigal, Peter (2014-08-22). "Terrafugia Transition". New York Times.
- Grady, Mary (30 December 2014). "Terrafugia Seeks Exemptions For Weight, Stall Speed". AVweb. Retrieved 1 January 2015.
- Grady, Mary (21 January 2015). "Terrafugia Wins Support For Exemption Request". AVweb. Retrieved 26 January 2015.
- "Flying cars almost anyone can drive — and fly — just took a big step closer to becoming legal in the U .S." nationalpost.com. Retrieved 22 June 2016.
- Bennett, Jay (23 June 2016). "FAA Gives Flying Car Prototype the Go-Ahead as a Light Sport Aircraft". Retrieved 24 June 2016.
- "Terrafugia Approved For Higher Weight, Stall Speed". AVweb. Retrieved 24 June 2016.
- Lawler, Richard (21 April 2015). "Terrafugia's flying car project is still a couple of years away". Engaget. Retrieved 22 April 2015.
- Terrafugia (18 November 2015). "Today at Terrafugia: Testing the Rotax 912iS Engine". Terrafugia. Archived from the original on 19 December 2015. Retrieved 14 December 2015.
- Terrafugia. "The Transition". Terrafugia. Retrieved 21 April 2017.
- Jian, Yang (13 November 2017). "Geely acquires U.S. flying-car developer Terrafugia". Automotive News. Retrieved 16 November 2017.
- Sheehan, Sam (16 November 2017). "Terrafugia aims to launch flying car in 2019 after takeover by Geely". Autocar Professional. Retrieved 16 November 2017.
- Terrafugia (24 April 2018). "Welcome Back D2!". Terrafugia. Retrieved 5 June 2018.
- "First Terrafugia Delivery Next July". AVweb Flash. July 2018.
Terrafugia hopes to deliver its first production flying car in July of 2019, company officials told a news conference at AirVenture 2018 Tuesday. The company hasn’t been at the big show for several years but received a major cash injection late last year when it was bought by Chinese automaker Geely, which owns Volvo and Lotus.
- O'Connor, Kate (17 July 2018). "Terrafugia Updates Transition". AVweb. Archived from the original on Mar 17, 2019. Retrieved 19 July 2018.
- Terrafugia, Inc. "Terrafugia Announces FAA Special Light-Sport Airworthiness Certificate". www.prnewswire.com. Retrieved 2021-01-27.
- "Mass Layoffs Said To Hit Terrafugia Weeks After Its Flying Car Was FAA-Approved". www.forbes.com. Retrieved 2021-02-20.
- O'Connor, Kate (17 February 2021). "Layoffs Reported At Terrafugia". AVweb. Archived from the original on 18 February 2021. Retrieved 15 February 2021.
- Dietrich, Anna Mracek (2009-03-16). "TransitionSpecs-FirstFlight-200" (PDF). Terrafugia. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2011-04-24. Retrieved 2009-04-02.
- "Terrafugia - Transition the Roadable Light Sport Aircraft : The Vehicle". Terrafugia. 2008. Archived from the original on 2010-07-24. Retrieved 2009-03-25.
- Haines, Thomas B. (May 2009). "Waypoints: From highway to airway". AOPA. Retrieved 2009-05-10.
- "Terrafugia -Transition the Roadable Light Sport Aircraft : The Vehicle". Terrafugia. 2010-07-26. Archived from the original on 2010-07-24. Retrieved 2010-07-27.
- "Prince Aircraft Company - Who We Build For". Prince Aircraft Company. Retrieved 2009-03-28.
- Ryan, David L. (2009-03-18). "'Flying car' at the Museum of Science". Boston.com (The Boston Globe). Retrieved 2009-03-28.
- "New York 2012: Terrafugia Transition Takes Flight". Automobile Magazine. April 5, 2012. Retrieved April 6, 2012.
- Ward, Jeff (2009-09-13). "IMG_1104".
The cockpit of the Terrafugia Transition. Note the automotive steering wheel, plus the flight control stick in its flying position.
- "EFIS-D100". Dynon Avionics. Retrieved 13 January 2015.
- "HS34: HSI Expansion Module Intro". Dynon Avionics. Retrieved 13 January 2015.
- "Dynon Avionics - D120 Intro". Dynon Avionics. Retrieved 13 January 2015.
- A Cockpit View of Suburban Driving. TerrafugiaInc. 2012-03-12.
- "Dynon in Terrafugia". Dynon Avionics Official Blog. Dynon Avionics. April 4, 2012. Retrieved April 5, 2012.
- "Transition Interior 2011 - High resolution graphic rendering". Terrafugia press images. Terrafugia, Inc. 2011-06-17. Archived from the original on 2014-03-07. Retrieved April 5, 2012.
Reference to the image www.terrafugia.com/press/photos/TransitionNextGen/GraphicRendersHIRES/TransitionInterior-2011.jpg photos/TransitionNextGen/GraphicRendersHIRES/TransitionInterior-2011.jpg
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Terrafugia Transition.|
- Official website
- Terrafugia Transition - First Flight Video Press Release on March 18, 2009 in Plattsburgh, NY. - (YouTube)
- Anna Mracek Dietrich: A plane you can drive - presentation at TEDGlobal, July 2011