United Airlines Buying 200 Electric Flying Taxis
United Airlines is investing $15 million in an air taxi company along with an agreement to purchase 200 four-seat electric aircraft with an option to buy 200 more.
United’s investment in Eve Air Mobility follows an earlier investment in another maker of eVTOL (electric vertical takeoff and landing) vehicles.
That $10 million investment, in Archer Aviation, provides for United to receive 100 of Archer’s first flying electric vehicles.
As part of the deal with Eve Air, both companies plan to work on the development and use of Eve’s flying taxis and the urban air mobility (UAM) ecosystem.
“United has made early investments in several cutting-edge technologies at all levels of the supply chain, staking out our position as a leader in aviation sustainability and innovation,” said Michael Leskinen, president of United Airlines Ventures. “United is making history again, by becoming the first major airline to publicly invest in two eVTOL companies. Our agreement with Eve highlights our confidence in the urban air mobility market.”
Eve is also creating a new air traffic management system for the UAM industry to scale safely, what I refer to as the new air roads, which is expected to be similar to Embraer’s air traffic management software.
“United’s investment in Eve reinforces the trust in our products and services and strengthens our position in the North American market,” said Andre Stein, co-CEO of Eve. “Our UAM agnostic solutions, coupled with the global know-how we have been developing at Eve and Embraer’s heritage, are the best fit for this initiative, giving United’s customers a quick, economical and sustainable way to get to its hub airports and commute in dense urban environments.”
Battery-powered flying taxis are relatively quiet and typically have a range of about 100 miles, depending on the design, as we wrote about here (The Case for the Flying Car).