The South Korean automaker, Hyundai will be working together with Uber in developing flying taxis with a concept of the prototype displayed at CES this week.
Last month, Hyundai promised to reveal a flying car concept at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas but it has taken its dream a step further giving the public a look at the futuristic flying taxi.
Hyundai is not only looking at mass producing the electric vertical takeoff and landing (eVTOL) aircraft, but it will also deploy them for Uber’s promised air taxi network which it had announced back in 2016 in a white paper that outlined a future “Uber Elevate” project.
Uber hopes to perform its own test flights this year and plans to launch a version of an air taxi service by 2023 starting in Dallas, Texas, and Los Angeles, California. It also recently revealed that it will offer helicopter rides too in New York from lower Manhattan to John F. Kennedy International Airport.
Hyundai will be offering its manufacturing plants to Uber so as to help push the air taxi project
Hyundai will be lending its manufacturing prowess to Uber to enable the company’s urban air taxi system to take shape by mid 2020. The Personal Air Vehicle (PAV), in view of the concepts released will have two tilt-rotors on the tail, and 10 other rotors allowing it to take off vertically.
The five-person vehicle will have a cruising speed of 180 mph (290 km/h) and a cruising altitude of around 1,000–2,000 feet (300–600 meters) above ground. Hyundai says by using smaller, electric-powered rotors, the vehicle will produce less noise than a combustion engine helicopter, which is crucial for cities worried about noise pollution.
During peak hours, it will require only about five to seven minutes for recharging. And Hyundai says it will have a range of 60 miles (100 kilometers) between charging.
Hyundai also unveiled concepts for a landing hub and an eco-friendly “Purpose Built Vehicle” (PBV) for ground transportation to and from the station. The PBV resembles a beige rectangle and will utilize AI to find optimal routes and travel in platoons, Hyundai says. Each PBV will be able to serve various functions, such as transit, coffee shop, or medical clinic.
Uber a few years ago, sent out a call to various companies calling upon any that were willing to partner with it in mass producing its air electric taxi technology which makes Hyundai the first global automaker to jump on-board.
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