Lilium, a company focused on all-electric, vertical take-off and landing (eVTOL) craft, has signed a deal for 10 vertiports in Florida.
Lilium has been working to make electric air taxis a reality. The company told Business Insider in 2019 that flights could be as cheap as $70. The company has now moved one step closer to deployment, partnering with Spanish infrastructure firm Ferrovial to build 10 vertiports throughout Florida.
The locations will ensure widespread coverage for the state’s residents.
“Our strategy to bring high-speed transportation networks to an entire region is being brought to life in Florida, and Ferrovial is the ideal partner with their unrivalled expertise in airport construction and operations around the globe,” said Dr. Remo Gerber, Chief Operating Officer, Lilium. “Nearly all 20 million Floridians will live within 30 minutes of our vertiports and the 140 million annual visitors to the Sunshine State will have a high-speed option available to travel to their destinations.”
“We are delighted to partner with Lilium in this big step towards new ways of achieving air mobility and sustainable infrastructure. Our partnership will deliver a uniquely different end-to-end passenger experience,” said Jorge Gil, CEO Ferrovial Airports.
Lilium’s jet uses 36 electric jet engines to provide thrust, giving it a speed of 186 mph. Taking off, the jet is only as loud as a passing truck, and completely inaudible from the ground once it reaches 400 meters. Because they’re electric, Lilium’s jets are much simpler than traditional designs, having roughly the same number of parts as the average family car.
It appears Lilium may have the right combination of features, performance and cost to finally make air taxies a success.