Hyundai is certainly banking big on urban flying taxi as it looks to bring the S-A1 concept to reality in the distant future
Hyundai is noticeably one of the very few car manufacturers that have shown interest in air mobility services. While we have seen endless concepts in the past and in theory blending two modes of transportation would reduce congestion and emissions, the reality has been so different as the case studies continue to stay as distant dreams without hitting the market.
The South Korean auto major though is optimistic over the future of urban air mobility and expects the sector to boom towards the end of this decade. While there are some flying cars available already in the international markets, no mainstream brand has stepped into the space yet and it highlights a window of opportunity that Hyundai might take advantage of.
Hyundai is working on a vertical take-off and landing flying vehicle instead of a fully blown flying car that can be used on public roads. The company released the prominins g S-A1 flying vehicle concept in the early parts of last year and it was developed in collaboration with Uber. It has planned to introduce its first commercial flying machine by 2028.
Moreover, the production version of the S-A1 concept is expected to carry unique features. In a recent interview, Michael Cole, Chief Executive Officer of Hyundai’s operations in Europe believes that urban air mobility will offer a great opportunity to free up congestion in cities and to help with emissions and things will pan out well only in the latter stages of this decade.
Last month, Hyundai announced a new company named Supernal and is exclusively established to bring the S-A1 concept to reality. The S-A1 is an all-electric concept that was designed for cruising speeds of up to 290 kmph and it has a cruising altitude between 1,000 and 2,000 feet. It has a range of up to 96 km and Hyundai said it will be piloted by humans initially.
It can be fully autonomous eventually and offers space for four occupants. The VTOL aircraft also features small rotors to reduce noise compared to conventional helicopters.