By: Nick Gambino
The concept of flying taxis is nothing new with Airbus working on its own iteration of the faster mode of transportation for the past six years. Airbus has now unveiled their newest model of the CityAirbus and it’s pretty cool.
They’re looking to create a faster, more eco-friendly ride-hailing option, especially for urban areas. The prospect of commuters having travel options that get them to their destination in half the time offers a lot of appeal.
The all-electric prototype unveiled at the AirbusSummit features a fixed-wing, plane-like design with a V tail jutting out the back. It hits speeds of 74.5 miles per hour, allowing it to cover distances of up to 50 miles. That is before it needs to be recharged. In other words, nobody’s going to be taking this thing from Washington, D.C. to New York. It’s going to be local only.
It’s designed to comfortably fit four passengers, giving you an idea of the size of the aerial taxi. Again, this is meant for cities where air and noise pollution are already out of control. Airbus isn’t going to get a lot of support if they add to the problem. The CityAirbus features electric-powered propellers, eight in all, producing zero emissions.
In terms of noise, they’re looking at less than 65 dBa when flying overhead and not much more when landing.
“We are on a quest to co-create an entirely new market that sustainably integrates urban air mobility into the cities while addressing environmental and social concerns,” Bruno Even, CEO of Airbus Helicopters says. “Airbus is convinced that the real challenges are as much about urban integration, public acceptance, and automated air traffic management, as about vehicle technology and business models.”
The new CityAirbus promises a new way to get around at much faster speeds without adding to the noise and air pollution and congestion on the road. I’m here for it, but I need to see how much it’s going to cost me first.
We’ll have to wait until at least 2023 when the prototype is scheduled for its first flight. They intend to have the CityAirbus certified by around 2025.