Will.i.am-Backed Flying Car Certified to Fly in Italy

Vehicle maker Jetson said the company has sold more than 300 of its vehicles at a price of $98,000 each

Chuck Martin, Editorial Director AI & IoT

October 17, 2023

4 Min Read
The Jetson One eVTOL

The flying vehicle company funded by singer, songwriter and technology entrepreneur Will.i.am has been certified to fly in Italy.

The Jetson One eVTOL (electric vertical takeoff and landing) vehicle received certification as the first eVTOL in the ultralight category, allowing pilots to fly the electric aerial vehicle (EAV) in uncontrolled airspace in Italy, according to the company.

Aero Club d'Italia (AeCI) issued its first registration certificate for a recreational ultralight eVTOL.

Ultralights do not require a pilot license in the U.S. and the Jetson One already took its maiden flight in the U.S. recently.

Jetson also received an operational authorization by the Italian Civil Aviation Authority (ENAC) to fly unmanned Jetson One vehicles remotely, somewhat of a standard practice with numerous new eVTOL vehicles.

“The operational authorization by ENAC allows us to gradually expand the flight envelope of the Jetson One, all without exposing a test-pilot to potential risk when we explore the limits of the vehicle,” said Stephan D'haene, Jetson CEO. “As a company, safety is our number one priority, and this authorization is a great enabler.”

Jetson said the company has already sold more than 300 Jetson One vehicles at $98,000 each.

The Jeston One recently was flown from a ranch in Westlake, Texas, by Tomasz Patan, Jetson co-founder and chief technology officer.

Related:Will.i.am Funds Flying Car Company; $15M Invested

This is not the first time a personal aerial vehicle has flown in the U.S., as others already have been doing for some time during development phases.

For example, Ryse Aero Tech from Ohio has taken its EAV to numerous events and even was flown at CES in Las Vegas. CEO Mark Kowitz, who also is a private pilot, has flown the Ryse aerial vehicle Recon many miles and has even taken off and landed on water.

And Doroni Aerospace CEO Doron Merdinger has flown its personal air vehicle in Florida.

Jetson was popularized recently when Will.i.am announced he was part of the $15 million seed funding Jetson received.

Will.i.am plans to train to become one of Jetson’s first pilots, according to the company, which operates at a private airfield south of Florence. 

“I’m proud to be a part of the Jetson family and support the company’s mission to democratize flight, opening the skies to all,” Will.i.am said at the financing announcement. “Personal aircraft ideal for short point-to-point flights will soon be a reality.”

Besides having been the frontman of the Black Eyed Peas, Will.i.am has designed and manufactured custom cars with futuristic features working with Mercedes-Benz and DeLorean.

Related:Flying Car Company Creates Behind-the-Scenes Video; Test Flies Indoors

The Jetson One EAV is in the light plane category, which does not require a pilot license to fly and has certain limitations, such as not being capable of flying faster than 63 mph.

Other forms of eVTOL vehicles are also under development, though that passenger-carrying category requires more stringent rules and regulations by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). 

Those include electric flying taxis and EAVs for personal use that require a pilot license, at least until the FAA details new training requirements for such vehicles.

Major airlines including Delta Air Lines, United Airlines and American Airlines all have placed orders or pre-orders for electric aerial vehicles.

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About the Author(s)

Chuck Martin

Editorial Director AI & IoT

Chuck Martin, author of "Flying Vehicles," New York Times Business Bestselling author and futurist, is Editorial Director at Informa Tech, home of AI Business, IoT World Today and Enter Quantum. Martin has been a leader in emerging digital technologies for more than two decades. He is considered one of the foremost emerging technology experts in the world and his latest book title "Flying Vehicles" (The Emergence of Personal Air Travel, Flying Cars, and Air Taxis) followed "Digital Transformation 3.0" (The New Business-to-Consumer Connections of The Internet of Things).  He hosts a worldwide podcast titled “The Voices of the Internet of Things with Chuck Martin,” where he converses with top executives from the companies driving the adoption of emerging technology.

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