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Israeli startup is developing air taxi that can shuttle passengers through the skies at 155mph

A startup from Israel has unveiled its first 'easy-to-operate' two seater flying car, that it hopes will be used to shuttle passengers through city skies as early as 2024.

The all electric vertical takeoff and landing (eVTOL) aircraft will primarily be sold in the US, where the Federal Aviation Authority (FAA) has worked with developers AIR for two years on preparing licensing and regulations to make it legal and safe. 

AIR executives say they hope to have approval by the end of 2023 for their AIR ONE vehicle, that is expected to cost 'about the same as a high end road car'. 

Very few details about price and availability have been released for the vehicle, which has two seats and can travel up to 110 miles on a single charge.

It will be sold to consumers who will be able to use its 'fly by intent' software, that will allow them to operate it in the air without being trained, or licensed pilots. 

A startup from Israel has unveiled its first 'easy-to-operate' two seater flying car, that it hopes will be used to shuttle passengers through city skies as early as 2024

The all electric vertical takeoff and landing (eVTOL) aircraft will primarily be sold in the US, where the Federal Aviation Authority (FAA) has worked with developers AIR for two years on preparing licensing and regulations to make it legal and safe

AIR ONE: FEATURES AND SPECIFICATIONS 

Maximum Speed: 155 mph

Cruise Speed: 100 mph

Range: 110 miles

Max Flight Time: 1 Hour

Power: 771 horsepower 

Payload: 441lb max

Luggage: H 22in \ W 14in \ D 9in

Charge Time: One hour 

AIR raised just under $10 million last year in seed funding, and has been using the funding to run a series of test flights without a pilot or passenger onboard.

The firm has also been building a series of full-size prototypes, required as part of the regulatory process, for rapid testing and changes ahead of approval to fly.  

CEO Rani Plaut says their focus is 'purely personal,' unlike over small flying vehicle manufacturers, such as Hyundai and Joby Aviation, which are focused on flying taxis.

An increasing number of investors and aviation companies have piled into the hot but yet-to-be-approved urban air mobility space.

It is an area regulators such as the FAA, and even air traffic control organisations, expert to be a major sector in the decade to come, particularly for taxi travel. 

Air taxi firm Joby Aviation has gone public via a merger with a blank-check company and Vertical Aerospace.

It has pre-orders for up to 1,000 eVTOL aircraft with launch customers Avolon and American Airlines. 

NASA are currently testing an all electric aircraft from Joby Aviation in Big Sur, California, to determine the 'guidelines' that might be needed for its real world use.

This includes determining the noise it is allowed to make when in a city environment, how long it can operate for, and how well it is expected to perform.

These tests will then feed back into the development process, as the various firms look to turn prototypes into vehicles for sale or licence.  

AIR raised just under $10 million last year in seed funding, and has been using the funding to run a series of test flights without a pilot or passenger onboard

The firm has also been building a series of full-size prototypes, required as part of the regulatory process, for rapid testing and changes ahead of approval to fly

'We're not talking about commercial flights, we're talking about people using this as they use cars,' said Plaut.

The US has a lot of open airspace that makes it a suitable first market for the AIR ONE. Plaut said AIR expects demand could reach 15,000 vehicles a year.

AIR is currently raising additional funds to get through the FAA certification process, but did not disclose how much. 

'During 4 years of development and testing we have proven that our measured results match the calculated and simulated performance in full scale prototypes,' according to AIR. 

Take-off for air taxis! NASA is testing an electric aircraft that takes off and lands vertically - and could shuttle passengers at 200mph across busy cities by 2024 

NASA is testing a new electric aircraft that can take off and land vertically, in the hope that by 2024 will be able to shuttle passengers across busy cities at 200mph.

The Joby Aviation vehicle could one day serve as an air taxi service for those in cities and surrounding areas, adding an alternative mode of transport for people and goods, according to the NASA team working in Big Sur, California.

The all-electrical 'flying taxi' can take off and land vertically and is a helicopter powered by six rotors designed to be as quiet as possible. 

The 10 day study started on September 1, and will see officials from the NASA Armstrong Flight Research Center test its performance and acoustics. 

The electrical vertical take off and landing (eVTOL) vehicle is the first in a number of aircraft that will be tested as part of NASA's Advanced Air Mobility (AAM) campaign to find future rapid modes of transport that could be approved for public use.