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Everyone always bemoans the fact that they were promised flying cars in the future, ala Jetsons, but that such cars don’t exist. Well, bemoan no longer.

First up is Beyond Roads’ Maverick, a modified car with a Subaru 2.5L, 170 hp engine that has a propeller-driven parachute. The flying car has received FAA certification, and it costs $84,000.

That not cool enough for you? Well, wait a little longer and save your pennies for the Terrafugia’s Transition, a car-airplane that will cost between $200,000 to $250,000 and should be available for test drives in 2012. The company is already taking orders.

The MIT-developed vehicle can take off or land at any publi- use general aviation airport with at least 2,500 feet of runway, which includes a majority of the over 5,000 public airports in the United States. Once landed, you fold the Transition’s wings and drive it off.

operate one you’ll need a Sport Pilot license to fly, which requires a minimum of 20 hours of flying experience. The license was created partly in response to the need for certification of “flying cars.”

One vehicle you can’t buy that’s under development is the U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency’s Transformer, a flying armored vehicle. The military wants the vehicle to transform from an off-road SUV into an aircraft that can travel up to 250 miles, rising up to 10,000 feet.

It may look something like an Avatar gunship.

Posted by Eric Berger at January 18, 2011 07:06 AM