Boeing is investing a further $450 million in its Wisk Aero eVTOL joint venture with Kitty Hawk, the companies announced this morning. The additional investment in Wisk signals Boeing's intention to hold a significant stake in the advanced air mobility sector.
Wisk said the funding will support efforts to certify what it described as its sixth-generation fully autonomous eVTOL design, which is set to replace the fifth-generation Cora two-seater prototype that has now logged almost 1,500 flight tests. However, Wisk and Boeing declined to provide any performance details or specifications for the new eVTOL, indicating that further announcements will be made later this year. They have also refused to publish a projected timeline for type certification, insisting they don’t want to prejudge how long regulators will take to declare the aircraft and its proposed autonomous flight operating model to be safe.
Nevertheless, Wisk itself intends to operate 14 million eVTOL air taxi flights each year across a network of 20 cities within five years of the FAA clearing the aircraft for production. Wisk CEO Gary Gysin expects to launch operations with around 2,000 eVTOL vehicles, implying that each would make an average of 19 flights each day with flight durations between 10 and 25 minutes. Its initial air taxi services will be in the U.S. but Wisk later intends to seek certification in other jurisdictions, most notably Europe.
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