Detroit Flying Car Startup MOBi-ONE Prepares for Takeoff
Airspace Experience Technologies (ASX), an aviation technology start-up, wants to use Detroit’s automotive manufacturing resources as a springboard to advance the era of urban air mobility.
To that end, the flying car startup has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with TPS Logistics. TPS Logistics is a 25-year-old global transportation company.
Potential manufacturing sites to build ASX’s MOBi-One eVTOL have been identified in Detroit and nearby Hamtramck. Facilities aim to start making 2,500 aircraft as early as 2022. The company predicts the flying cars will be operational in the world’s 50 largest cities by 2025.
Lyfts and Ubers for the Air
The vision of ASX Technologies CEO Jon Rimenelli is to provide air taxi services at costs comparable to ride-hailing services such as Lyft or Uber.
The eVTOL MOBi-One, which expects testing to begin in 2020, will have a range of 65 miles. With a hybrid powertrain, that range could be extended to 250 miles or so. Cruising speed is pegged at 150 mph.
Aviation experts were skeptical about ASX’s chances for success at first. Among the skeptics was former NASA engineer Anita Sengupta. But it seems that, with time, comes understanding. Sengupta is now ASX’s chief product officer.
The goal: General aviation for the masses. The proof: Check back in 2025.