However, as congestion in the big cities is becoming more and more problematic and demand for faster travel increases, companies are rushing to get the final product out and create a network for urban air mobility. Uber is already trying to design Skyport hubs that can be built throughout cities, and Rolls-Royce is on course to certify its electric vertical take-off and landing vehicle (eVTOL) by 2024.
Now, German startup company Volocopter is also coming in strong with its latest addition to the family of aircraft designed for the intra-city mission. Dubbed VoloConnect, the eVTOL is built to connect suburbs to cities.
The new aircraft would be able to fly further than its sibling VoloCity, a small eVTOL unveiled last year with a range of just 35 km (22 miles). VoloConnect sports a hybrid lift and push configuration that can carry up to four passengers over a distance of 100 km (62 miles) and can reach a maximum speed of 250 kph (155 mph). The compact aircraft layout, necessary for urban missions, is naturally stable and highly efficient during forwarding flight while maintaining a low stall speed.
A Munich-based team of experts has already flown several scaled prototypes of VoloConnect. According to the company, the new aircraft will be incorporated into Volocopter's VoloIQ digital platform infrastructure to provide an additional mission for longer routes. The eVTOL's hybrid lift and push concept is expected to be certified over the next five years.