Glimpse of future? Chinese firm tests flying taxi in Dubai

Published on Oct 11, 2022 10:17 AM IST

The two-passenger flying taxi has a modern design and is propelled by eight propellers. The sleekly vehicle's top speed, according to the company, is 130 km/h.

A man looks at the XPeng X2, an electric flying taxi developed by the Guangzhou-based XPeng, Inc's aviation affiliate, being tested in front of the Marina District in Dubai.(AP)
A man looks at the XPeng X2, an electric flying taxi developed by the Guangzhou-based XPeng, Inc's aviation affiliate, being tested in front of the Marina District in Dubai.(AP)
By | Edited by Aryan Prakash

A Chinese company tested out an electric flying taxi in Dubai on Monday, offering a solution to beat the traffic and reach destination super quick by boarding air travel from door step.

One of the many flying automobile projects underway worldwide is this XPeng X2, which was created by the aviation division of the Guangzhou-based XPeng Inc. Only a small number have undergone successful passenger testing, and it will probably be years before any are ever placed into real use, PTI reported.

However, this demonstration offered a sneak peek of cutting-edge technology that one day might carry passengers across busy cities above all other traffic. The company claims that although Monday's presentation used an empty cockpit, a manned flying test was actually conducted in July 2021.

The two-passenger vehicle has a modern design and is propelled by eight propellers. The sleekly vehicle's top speed, according to the company, is 130 km/h.

How it is different from airplanes and helicopters?

The flying taxi gives quick point-to-point pickup and drop facility. Unlike airplanes they are based on the principle of ‘vertical take-off and landing’ or VTOL and if the power source is electric, it becomes eVTOL or ‘electric vertical take-off and landing.’

Helicopters too take-off and land vertically but these eVTOLs are designed to be safer, quieter, faster and environment sustainable.

Future scope of air taxis

Using this technology, passengers could be transported around town in the driverless cars in air taxis, leaving the congested roads. This is believed to be the solution for transportation in over-crowding cities.

However, the industry still confronts considerable difficulties, including the battery backup, safety problems in the vehicle and air traffic control concerns, infrastructural issues and above all- to keep cost in check while making it affordable.

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