Vertical Aerospace, based in Bristol, England, has announced more pre-sales than anyone else in the eVTOL industry – more than 1,350 aircraft worth US$5.4 billion – and believes it will be one of the first companies to achieve type certification with the European Aviation Safety Authority (EASA), meeting compliance standards it claims are far tougher than the US FAA’s. Vertical has shown its aircraft breaking out of CG renders and into the flesh – albeit in the form of what’s essentially a life-sized, non-functional model called the VX4.
With a public listing on the NYSE imminent through a SPAC merger, Vertical has now shown its aircraft breaking out of CG renders and into the flesh – albeit in the form of what’s essentially a life-sized, non-functional model called the VX4. The VA-X4 air taxi, if it ever goes into production, will be able to transport a pilot and up to four passengers at speeds of up to 202 mph (325 km/h) in near-silent operation, with a noise level of roughly 60 dB in hover mode and 45 dB in cruise mode.
The wing has eight large-diameter props, which are spread along the front and back of the wing. The front ones have five blades and may be tilted between a Vertical VTOL orientation and a horizontal cruise orientation. The rear four blades have four blades and can scissor up to stack and sit like a two-bladed prop to reduce drag in forward flight.