As a kid, I used to watch “The Jetsons” and “Back to the Future,” and watch the characters fly their way back and forth work. Isn’t it fascinating how we could bid goodbye to the traffic and fly back home! Well you might just see flying cars in the United States soon.
Electric Flying Taxis are gaining popularity in the States lately. The latest inclusion into this party is American Airlines. American Airlines Group Inc. is planning on getting in on the flying taxi trend. Various other airlines, aerospace manufacturers, and tech companies have lately shown interest in the space too. American Airlines plans to invest around $25 million in Vertical Aerospace Group Ltd.
The Current Picture
Vertical is a U.K.-based electric aircraft startup. It plans to conduct the first test flight of its new VA-X4 aircraft later this year. American Airlines plans to buy approximately 250 (or up to a whopping 1000) of Vertical’s upcoming flying taxis. Both the airlines and financiers look to back the emerging technology.
The aircraft are electric and they take off and land vertically similar to helicopters. They could fly past congested city roads to get passengers to and from airports in way less time. These flying cabs will of course take time to become a reality and American’s order is also dependent on Vertical aircraft’s approval by regulators and other milestones.
Vertical said its VA-X4 aircraft has the capacity to hold 4 passengers and a pilot. It can fly at speeds of more than 300 kilometers an hour and has a range of more than 150 kilometers. Vertical is aiming to begin commercial operations from 2024.
In February, United Airlines also announced a team-up with US regional carrier Mesa Airlines to invest in flying taxi firm Archer. Archer’s eVTOL (electric Vertical Take-Off and Landing) aircraft is a part of the nearly $1bn order!
This race towards a more efficient and time-saving mode of transport will be an amazing one to keep an eye on. America has shown a growing interest in this space and we can expect some electric flying taxis flying in the American skies soon!