Shanghai Autoflight Co. Ltd.
BAN's World GazetteerChina
Less than four months after releasing the original concept, eVTOL developer AutoFlight has showcased its second proof-of-concept air taxi Prosperity I. In the latest modified and more efficient design, new optimised lifting propellers allow for a higher hover efficiency while the two pushing propellers that were previously on either side of the air taxi have been replaced with one centre propeller with twin motors to enhance cruising abilities. This is very close to the final design, due to be released later this year.
The Prosperity I has been designed for transfers between parts of a city, airport commutes, connecting two nearby cities or enabling trips to the countryside while avoiding traffic on the ground. When ready for commercial flight in 2026, it is expected that a trip that takes hours by car will be reduced to about 10 minutes, without being any less safe or more expensive than a car taxi ride.
AutoFlight started building POC 2 in January 2022. Production took around three months, with the maiden flight in April and more than 30 additional transition flights in the last few weeks.
AutoFlight Europe managing director Mark Henning says: 'POC 2 is a new milestone for us, and we are pleased to have achieved over 30 successful transitions in the last few weeks with a full size aircraft. This further demonstrates the great potential of our lift and cruise configuration that combines simplicity and safety. We will encompass all these key experiences and learnings into the final, full scale design of the Prosperity I, which we will be revealing later this year.”
AutoFlight CEO Tian Yu, who has over two decades of experience designing and building electric aircraft and 300 electric aviation-related patents, adds: “We're delighted to announce POC 2 for the Prosperity I. This takes us another step towards our vision of unlocking the skies for mass individual transport in the air by creating safe, efficient eVTOL aircraft.”
The milestone is the latest of a series of significant developments for AutoFlight including the establishment of a European base in Augsburg, Germany; the appointment of Mark Henning (formerly of Airbus) as its European managing director; as well as $100 million investment from next-generation mobility investor Team Global.