Uber has been working on a “flying taxi” project which will see electric-powered vertical take-off and landing (VTOL) aircraft servicing passengers in busy cities. The company is hopeful that it will get the service up and running over the next decade. Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi has said today that he sees the flying taxi service from Uber being commercialized in the next 5-10 years.
Speaking at an investor forum in Tokyo, Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi said that flying vehicles will eventually become a method of mass transportation. He expects the company to launch a commercial service powered by a fleet of small electric VTOL aircraft within 10 years.
Uber first floated the idea of a flying taxi service back in 2016. It even published a 99 page white paper on the project called “Uber Elevate” and detailed its vision for on-demand air transportation in urban markets.
The company’s idea is to have a fleet of small electric VTOL aircraft which will basically be more cost-effective and quieter alternatives to helicopters. It’s now working with NASA to have those flying aircraft running in Los Angeles by 2020. Khosrowshahi’s comments don’t make it clear that whether or not the new timeline affects the company’s plans for testing the service in Los Angeles within two years.