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In this case, the federal techno bad boys of DARPA have decided to have a crack at a real, no-shit flying car: and probably not just an ordinary car, but an off-road one to boot. They don't want a light plane that you can drive on a road, like the Terrafugia Transition. They don't want a paramotor, either. According to the Transformer TX announcement issued yesterday: The Government’s envisioned concept consists of a robust ground vehicle that is capable of configuring into a VTOL [Vertical Take Off and Landing] air vehicle with a maximum payload capability of approximately 1,000 lbs.The sky-jeep should be able to carry four fully-equipped troops, or alternatively one stretcher and one medic. It should be no bigger than 30 feet long by 8.5' wide and 9' high in ground configuration - on the order of two Hummers nose-to-tail - and should have wheels and suspension giving "road performance similar to an SUV" and "capable of handling light off-road travel".
Like all DARPA projects Transformer TX is unlikely to succeed at all. Even if US Marine rifle companies one day do ride to war in handy four-man sky jeeps rather than cumbersome choppers or Humvees, that doesn't necessarily mean flying cars for all any more than Harriers or Ospreys did.