Volocopter air taxi takes flight in Europe for the first time
Volocopter's air taxi has taken its first urban flight in Europe, in Stuttgart, Germany.
The electrical aircraft's flight was the centrepiece of the two-day Vision Smart City event, held on 14-15 September at the Mercedes-Benz Museum.
On board were Volocopter CEO Florian Reuter; Daimler Chairman of the Board Ola Källenius; and the Minister-President of the state of Baden-Württemberg, Winfried Kretschmann and his colleague Thomas Strobl.
Volocopter has previously taken public flights in Dubai in 2017 and Las Vegas in 2018, among over 1,000 test flights.
The German company made the first manned flight of an electrical vertical take-off and landing (eVTOL) aircraft in 2011, and has since developed several generations of the 'flying taxi'.
The design for the fourth incarnation, christened VoloCity, was unveiled in August. It has a range of 35km and airspeed of 110 km/h, with room for two people, plus hand luggage.
It is supported by Mercedes-Benz Design, with Mercedes-Benz's parent Daimler as an investor.
Volocopter's CEO Florian Reuter says: "Our Volocopter air taxis open up a completely new dimension in urban mobility.
“As Stuttgart has seen today, they fly safely, quietly and are fast approaching the implementation stage.
“Volocopter air taxis are able to ease traffic congestion in major cities around the world.”
Daimler's Chair of the Board, Ola Källenius, says: “Our partner Volocopter shows how an air taxi is turning the dream of driving into the dream of flying. At Daimler we work on the mobility of the future too.
“By 2022 we will have electrified the entire Mercedes-Benz portfolio.
“The road to climate-neutral mobility is a joint effort of companies and politics. We at Daimler are willing and ready to make our contribution.”
The flight was part of a research project by the Technical University of Stuttgart to examine the social acceptance of air taxis.
Find out more: www.volocopter.com