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UBER UPDATE: FLYING CARS GET CLOSER TO REALITY

27-04-2017
by 
in 

Not satisfied with overhauling the ground-based taxi market, Uber are now looking to the skies. 

We've written before about the possibility of flying cars coming to Dubai, but now Uber has really taken up the challenge. 

Uber chief product officer Jeff Holden said that urban aviation was a "natural next step for Uber" and it expected to deploy its flying taxis in Dallas-Fort Worth, Texas, and Dubai by 2020.

Uber's flying taxis will be small, electric aircraft that take-off and land vertically (VTOLs), with zero emissions and quiet enough to operate in cities.

Uber estimated a trip that would take two hours under normal road conditions could take as little as fifteen minutes in the air, with less traffic, and an as-the-crow-flies route cutting down on the trip time. 

In fact, Uber seems convinced that they can make flying cars not just feasible, but preferable (and cheaper) to owning a road-based car. 

Uber set out its vision for flying cars as an "affordable form of daily transportation for the masses" in a white paper in October 2016.

The company is working with Hillwood Properties to make four vertiports — VTOL hubs with multiple take-off and landing pads, and charging infrastructure — in Dallas starting next year, Mr Holden said.

Uber, valued at $68 billion, has also teamed up with companies such as Bell Helicopter, Aurora, Pipistrel, Mooney and Embraer to make the flying taxis.

The company has also partnered with US electric vehicle charging station maker ChargePoint Inc. Uber is working on developing an exclusive charger for its network.

Uber, which has partnered with the Dubai Government, expects to conduct passenger flights as part of the World Expo 2020 in Dubai.

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