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Air One eVTOL Wants to Be Your Future Sportscar That Can Fly
Flying cars should have been here for at least a couple of years, according to the very optimistic estimates from a while back. In the final quarter of 2021, we’re being promised a flying car for 2024 – and it will be one worth the wait.

Air One eVTOL Wants to Be Your Future Sportscar That Can Fly

The Air One eVTOL is like a sportscar of the skies, is set for 2024 availabilityThe Air One eVTOL is like a sportscar of the skies, is set for 2024 availabilityThe Air One eVTOL is like a sportscar of the skies, is set for 2024 availabilityThe Air One eVTOL is like a sportscar of the skies, is set for 2024 availabilityThe Air One eVTOL is like a sportscar of the skies, is set for 2024 availabilityThe Air One eVTOL is like a sportscar of the skies, is set for 2024 availabilityThe Air One eVTOL is like a sportscar of the skies, is set for 2024 availability
The flying cars of tomorrow are, of course, the so-called eVTOLs (electric takeoff and landing aircraft), which will serve as air taxis and enhance personal air mobility. However, in the ever-crowded landscape of urban environments, not even the fastest sportscar can get you through the daily commute and into the office on time. So how about a sportscar that flies?

That’s pretty much the premise of a new startup out of Israel, Air EV. Its flagship product, which is supposedly undergoing testing in prototype form as we speak (hat tip to New Atlas), is called Air One. It’s what you’d get if you crossed a sportscar with a small volume fixed-wing aircraft. It has the convenience and performance of the former and the maneuverability and flight capabilities of the latter.

Air One has been in development for the past four years with Air EV, but it’s not even close to becoming a reality. Optimistically, the startup is looking at prototype certification for the third quarter of 2024, and that would be the first major milestone guaranteeing actual production. On the bright side, it’s been testing prototypes of the Air One since 2017, including a 60% scale prototype in 2020.

This detail should give potential customers the extra confidence in the upcoming eVTOL, which is important because Air One is now taking pre-orders. The startup promises that the first 100 owners will enjoy “special terms and privileges,” like “not only [ownership of] the best eVTOL ever but you will be served on a personal level you’ve never experienced.” Specifics aren’t offered, and neither is the base price.

On paper, Air One sounds like the dream vehicle of tomorrow. With a stated goal of “making the ultimate freedom of flying accessible,” it will be a two-seat, fixed-wing eVTOL that will be easy to operate, intuitive, comfortable, and fun. The landing gear is retractable, and the wings collapse, so owners will be able to store it in their car garage, where it should take up no more space than a regular road car.

Where other startups focus on flying taxis, Air One is a “buy ‘n’ fly”-type of aircraft, designed exclusively for personal everyday use. It has an aerodynamic, patented design and is propelled by eight rotors located on two sets of pods at the front and rear. The cabin is enclosed in a glass canopy, which opens like a clamshell for easy access.

Either of the two occupants can pilot the aircraft thanks to dual controls, and there’s a glass section in the floor to allow the one who isn’t flying the chance to better enjoy the view. It’s a nice touch – and a supposedly appropriate one considering this is, essentially, a rich boy’s fancy toy.

In terms of performance, the 771 hp Air One will have a maximum flight time of one hour or 177 km (110 miles), a top speed of 250 kph (155 mph), and a cruising speed of 161 kph (100 mph). No word yet on battery, but Air EV says a full charge will be possible within the hour, with 80% charging done in just 30 minutes.

The maximum payload is 200 kg (441 pounds), including the two standard-size airplane cabin luggage pieces. In other words, if you’re thinking of getting into personal air mobility sometime in 2024 and you want to bring someone along for the ride, you’d better start working on losing those extra lockdown pounds, if need be.

Speaking of piloting, certification will most certainly be necessary. To facilitate wide adoption, Air EV is saying it’s working on a proprietary “fly by intent” control system that would make flying the Air One easy and intuitive, as well as an AI-enabled monitoring system that would perform “frequent inspections of the vehicle and eliminate checklists for riders to ensure paramount safety.”

Assuming everything goes according to plan, Air One should become commercially available at an unspecified date in 2024, and will be the first in a line of similar aircraft from the same company that would bring the fun to personal air mobility. There’s a very big “if” right there, so it’s best to not hold high hopes at least until certification is granted.

Editor's note: This article was not sponsored or supported by a third-party.

 
 
 
 
 

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