Volvo's parent firm Geely to buy U.S. flying-car startup Terrafugia


Under the acquisition terms, Terrafugia is expected to be domiciled and headquartered in the USA and will continue to focus on developing flying cars. Terrafugia Inc., founded by five Massachusetts Institute of Technology graduates, also plans to deliver the first vertical take-off and landing vehicle by 2023. The U.S. company has around 100 engineers, recently tripled in anticipation of fund injection from Geely.

Terrafugia, despite being founded by a quintet of MIT graduates, is hardly immune to such skepticism. Although the company will be under the wing of the Chinese, it will maintain autonomy over its major research and development capabilities and production facilities, while looking to synergize with Geely in accelerating development. Capable of vertical take-off and landing (VTOL) and also featuring a 300 hp petrol engine, Terrafugia claims a 322 km/h cruising speed at altitude.

Geely, which owns a stake in national carmaker Proton, said it had received the necessary approval for the deal, including from the United States government's Committee on Foreign Investment, to take over all of Terrafugia's operations and assets.

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In August, Proton announced that the Geely Boyue special utility vehicle (SUV) would be adopted as the company's next auto model.

Geely Holding brings in seven new directors, including Terrafugia's new chairman Nathan Yu Ning (Geely's Vice-President of International Business) and three other Geely Holding executives, including its vice-chairman Yang Jian. Chris Jaran, former managing director for Bell Helicopter China, was also appointed as a board member and will take over as CEO.

"Now as part of Geely Holding Group I am confident that we can reach that vision and subsequent commercial success by utilising the Group's shared global synergy", he added. Dietrich will remain in the company as chief technology officer, a newly created position, after the acquisition.

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Head of the Chinese engineering company Geely An Cuihai announced plans automaker for the foreseeable future.

However, the company did not disclose any financial details concerning the deal, The China Daily newspaper reported today. Therefore, the Chinese will create a first flying vehicle.

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