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Green Light For Flying Car: Transition Roadable Aircraft Gets Highway Ready

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The car-plane cometh. On June 30th, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration granted the Transition Roadable Aircraft a series of special exemptions by that make the car operable in skyways and on byways, according to the L.A. Times.

So what kinds of special exemptions does a "roadable aircraft" (best name ever) need? Well, special windows, for one. Regular laminated automotive safety glass is too heavy for the Transition while in the air, and there's always a danger that a bird could fracture it. (Dang birds!) Instead of glass windows, the Transition will use a polycarbonate material less prone to shattering. NHTSA also signed off on the use of special tires.

More a plane that drives than a car that flies, Terrafugia's Transition had its first test flight/drive in 2009 and is scheduled to be available by the end of 2012 for approximately $250,000 space dollars.