Company Plans To Rent Self-piloted eVTOLs

 - December 12, 2018, 3:18 PM

A new company called Lift plans to rent lightweight single-seat electric vertical takeoff and landing aircraft (eVTOL) to the general public at select locations beginning next year. The aircraft are compliant with FAR Part 103 (Powered Ultralight) and no pilot’s license is required. Renters will need to complete a one- to two-hour safety and training course that includes virtual reality simulation before flying.

The Lift Hexa aircraft are duration limited to flights of 15 minutes, have a maximum forward speed of 55 knots, and a maximum passenger payload of 250 pounds. Lift plans to charge $249 per flight.

The aircraft are powered by 18 independent electric motors, propellers, and batteries, and are equipped with a low-level ballistic recovery parachutes and floats, and will be operated only in Class G airspace with radar coverage and in daylight VFR. Aircraft directional control is achieved via varying the speeds of the various electric motors via onboard flight computers. A single cockpit joystick controls pitch, roll, yaw, and acceleration and flight control inputs can also be made via touchscreen or voice commands. The aircraft can also be controlled remotely by Lift pilots and is programmed to land autonomously in the event of low power or emergency conditions. Lift does not plan to sell its Hexa aircraft to the general public at this time.