South Korean carmaker Hyundai Motor has partnered with Uber to develop a line of flying taxis as part pf the Uber Elevate aerial ride share service.
A full-scale mock-up, of the service that is being called the “S-A1,” is making will debut at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas this week. This personal air vehicle (PAV) will be electronically powered and will have the capacity to carry up to four passengers up to 60 miles at speeds of 180 mph per trip.
Uber Elevate has a number of traditional aerospace partners to include Embraer, Bell and Aurora, but, according to Eric Allison, head of Uber Elevate, “Hyundai is our first vehicle partner with experience of manufacturing passenger cars on a global scale.”
“We believe Hyundai has the potential to build Uber Air vehicles at rates unseen in the current aerospace industry, producing high quality, reliable aircraft at high volumes to drive down passenger costs per trip.”
The Uber Air vehicles were first unveiled in 2016. These air taxis are expected to bypass traffic by reaching altitudes of 1,000 to 2,000 feet.
Uber Elevate plans to demonstrate flights this year. The ride-sharing service hopes to launch commercial air taxi service in 2023, with operations initially set to begin in Dallas, Los Angeles and Melbourne, Australia.
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About the Author: Aisha K. Staggers is a writer, lecturer, political analyst and literary agent. She appears weekly for “Staggers’ State of Things” on the Dr. Vibe Show. Her work has been published by Paper Magazine, AfroPunk, The Spool, GREY Journal, MTV News, HuffPost, Blavity, Atlanta Blackstar, For Harriet, New York Review of Books and a host of other first-run publications and syndicated outlets. Find her on Twitter @AishaStaggers. For more of her work, check out her page here!