Photo Credit: AIR EVTOL / Air One YouTube screengrab
Personal eVTOL taking flight during test in the Negev, December 2022

An Israeli-made electric vehicle designed to fly commuters on short trips far above congested streets made its maiden unmanned flight last month over the skies of southern Israel, Reuters reports.


Produced by the Israeli startup Air EV, the vehicle looks like a combination passenger-carrying super drone and mini plane, with a vertical takeoff and landing (eVTOL).

It can fly an operator and one passenger at an altitude of 1,200 feet (366 meters) as far as 100 miles (160 kilometers) on a single charge. It takes about an hour to bring the vehicle back to full charge.

The vehicle’s average day-to-day speed is expected to be about 100 miles per hour (160 kilometers per hour) with a maximum capacity of 1100 kilograms.

“This is a major milestone,” said CEO and co-founder Rani Plaut. “We have transitioned today to forward flight … bringing (closer) our dream of mass production of the AIR ONE.”

The vehicle will next be tested with someone on board during flight.

The company plans to charge a base price of around $150,000 for the vehicle – the price of a high-end luxury car – and hopes to hit the market at the end of 2024.

Air EV is currently funding on the OurCrowd platform.

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Hana Levi Julian is a Middle East news analyst with a degree in Mass Communication and Journalism from Southern Connecticut State University. A past columnist with The Jewish Press and senior editor at Arutz 7, Ms. Julian has written for, and other media outlets, in addition to her years working in broadcast journalism.