A zero-emission electric plane has completed a series of tests in Germany, and could be offering an air taxi service in your city in the future.
Lilium Jet is reportedly the electric plane capable of vertical take-off and landing. A two-seater version of the jet was tested recently, and Lilium now plans to develop a larger, five-seater version in the future, specifically designed for on-demand air taxi and ridesharing.
“We have solved some of the toughest engineering challenges in aviation to get to this point,” said Lilium co-founder and CEO Daniel Wiegand in a press release. “The successful test flight programme shows that our ground-breaking technical design works exactly as we envisioned. We can now turn our focus to designing the five seater production aircraft.”
The company says that the combination of energy efficiency and minimal infrastructure required on the ground means flights in the air taxi will be comparable with normal taxis over the same distance. Traveling in the jet will also be five times faster than car.
Lilium gives the example of a flight from Manhattan to JFK airport, which it says would take around five minutes, compared to 55 minutes driving. The company also says that the introduction of flying taxis would enable people to live further away from their place of work.