It is increasingly becoming a reality that the big brands bet on air vehicles as a future form of urban mobility. California-based Joby Aviation is an aerospace startup that has been working on an electric vehicle for the past decade. In its last financing round, it obtained US $ 590 million and Toyota's partnership for the development of the vehicle fleet and model design.
The Japanese manufacturer's entry is just a narrowing of the relationship, because it had already invested in the company in a previous round in 2018, along with Intel and JetBlue. In total, Joby has already raised 720 million in the project, advances the The verge, being one of the companies that signed the air taxi service with Uber.
It is said that Jobi has kept its prototype secret, unlike other companies that are developing aerial vehicles. But this time it revealed information and images. In its structure, the device has six electric rotors and a cabin for five people, including the pilot. The vehicle takes off and lands vertically like a helicopter, but then rotates the rotors and moves like an airplane. The vehicle has a range of 240 kilometers at a top speed of 320 km / h. It is said to be 100 times quieter than a conventional aircraft.
Joby Aviation relies on Toyota to take the lead in the market, especially faster build capacity than the competition. In addition, the Japanese manufacturer has experience in construction, quality and cost control to support the development and production of the device.
Regarding the partnership with Uber, this will help in the control of air traffic, as well as the construction of the landing base, connections with land transport, as well as the application involving the taxi service.
Hyundai was recently at CES showing its flying vehicle prototype. There are already several companies in the race to put the first commercial car in the sky: Airbus / Audi with its Vahana Alpha Two, the Volocopter that will start tests and public demonstrations of its air taxi this year; Larry Page's Kitty Hawk Cora is also in the skies of New Zealand. And then there are several other drone startup projects to transport people.