Hyundai and Uber announce air-taxi partnership

Hyundai and Uber have announced a partnership to develop air taxis for a future ride-share network.

Hyundai will produce and deploy the air vehicles, and Uber will provide airspace support services, connections to ground transportation, and customer interfaces through an aerial ride share network.

Jaiwon Shin, executive vice president and head of Hyundai’s Urban Air Mobility (UAM) Division, said: “Our vision of Urban Air Mobility will transform the concept of urban transportation. We expect UAM to vitalize urban communities and provide more quality time to people. We are confident that Uber Elevate is the right partner to make this innovative product readily available to as many customers as possible.”

Eric Allison, head of Uber Elevate, said: “Hyundai is our first vehicle partner with experience of manufacturing passenger cars on a global scale. We believe Hyundai has the potential to build Uber Air vehicles at rates unseen in the current aerospace industry, producing high quality, reliable aircraft at high volumes to drive down passenger costs per trip. Combining Hyundai’s manufacturing muscle with Uber’s technology platform represents a giant leap forward for launching a vibrant air taxi network in the coming years.”

Hyundai has worked with Uber Elevate to develop a PAV (Personal Air Vehicle) model, S-A1. It is designed for a cruising speed up to 180 miles/hr, a cruising altitude of around 1,000-2,000 feet, and to fly trips up to 60 miles.

It is 100% electric and will be piloted initially, but over time they will become autonomous. The cabin is designed with four passenger seats.