Volocopter's X2 eVTOL aircraft flew a flight demonstration in France for the first time. (Volocopter)
The electric vertical takeoff and landing (eVTOL) aircraft manufacturer Volocopter flew its Volocopter 2X in public for the first time in France at the Paris Air Forum, the company announced in a June 21 press release.
The flight took place at Le Bourget Airfield and lasted three minutes, according to the release. The aircraft flew in a 500 m route at speeds up to 30 km/h.
“The first flight today in Paris highlights Volocopter’s commitment to bring air taxi services to this region in time for the 2024 Olympic Games,” Florian Reuter, Volocopter CEO, said in a statement. “The alliance of the Paris region, Groupe ADP, and RATP Groupe and their intent to bring electric air taxis to France is a stellar example of the collaborative approach we see to be the most successful for adding this exciting category of mobility to cities globally.”
Volocopter is currently working with the French Civil Aviation Authority to bring air taxis to the Île-de-France region and Groupe ADP and RATP Groupe to use eVTOLs in the 2024 Olympics, according to the release. In September 2020, Volocopter was chosen as the first vehicle and operations partner to launch an urban air mobility industrial branch in Paris.
“Today, we were as close as never before in France to experience electric aviation. Volocopter is a vivid example of what the futures of aviation could look like, both carbon-free and innovative, that Groupe ADP wants to accompany thanks to our infrastructure assets, expertise, and know-how,” Edward Arkwright, deputy CEO at Groupe ADP, said. “Along with the other partners of the RE.Invent Air Mobility initiative, Volocopter is now ready to enter a first test flight campaign by September on the Pontoise airfield sandbox we have been building up in the past months. And we are thrilled to be partnering with them, RATP Group and DGAC towards our objective of flight demonstrations in the Paris Region during the 2024 Olympic Games, to lay the foundation of a strong UAM industrial ecosystem in France.”
Volocopter has a design organization approval from the European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) for its eVTOL aircraft.
“After having responded as the first player in the urban air mobility industry, in the context of the call for expressions of interest, we are very pleased that Volocopter has confirmed its development and its establishment in France,” Marie-Claude Dupois, director of strategy, innovation, and development at RATP Group, said. “For RATP Group, this new mobility aims to complement our traditional transport modes.”
Volocopter is working on creating an urban air mobility ecosystem that includes VoloCity, an eVTOL aircraft for intra-city missions, VoloConnect, an eVTOL for inter-city missions, VoloDrone, a drone for cargo transport, VoloPorts, vertiport sites, and VoloIQ, a digital platform.