Futuristic aerial vehicles are hitting the headlines almost every other day. Taking the idea to the next level, Hyundai showed off a flying taxi concept at the ongoing CES 2020 tech show in Las Vegas. The company partnered with Uber to develop a network of aerial ride-share.
Notably, Hyundai is the first automaker to join the air taxi project of Uber, which has teamed up with eight companies for the purpose. And, the company claims that it would be unrealistic to expect all of these partners to hit the market at the same time.
Hyundai’s flying taxi concept!
Detailing on the flying taxi concept of Hyundai, it can land and take off vertically. It can fly at a speed of up to 180mph and has a cruising altitude of nearly 1,000 to 2,000 feet. The flight range of the Hyundai flying taxi concept is up to 60 miles. It is a four-passenger model that will be human-piloted initially. Later, it can fly autonomously without human intervention.
It will feature multiple smaller rotors and propellers around its airframe to reduce noise similar to the helicopters with combusion engines that feature large rotors. While Hyundai will produce and deploy the air vehicles, Uber will operate the aerial ride-share network.
The Hyundai Executive Vice Chairman, Euisun Chung, expects the commercialisation of urban air mobility service to be launched in 2028 as it will take time to meet the laws and systems.
Effective solution to urban congestion
Though Hyundai is the first automaker to join the ambitious Uber air taxi project, there are several other tech companies and automakers that are racing to develop small self-flying cars. This is considered to be an effective solution to urban congestion.
Already, Geely, Toyota, and Daimler have unveiled investments in startups that want to deploy electric flying cars that can take off and land vertically. Even Porsche is teaming up with Boeing, the aircraft maker to develop a concept for such an electric vehicle. As per forecasts by Porsche Consulting, the urban air mobility market is all set to commercialise after 2025.
The air taxis will come in numerous shapes and sizes. These will have electric motors instead of jet engines and there will be rotating wings or rotors in the place of propellers. It is estimated that the urban flight market will exceed the number of commercial airplanes that fly around the world.
Main image picture credits: Hyundai
Stay tuned to Silicon Canals for more European technology news.