Vertical Aerospace and American Airlines have secured the pre-delivery payment commitment, confirming the delivery slots for 50 VX4 electric Vertical and Take Off Landing (eVTOL) aircraft.
This announcement represents a big deal for Vertical Aerospace, allowing the company to gain credibility for its project, which lacked actual orders, having commitments by several companies, including the likes of American Airlines, AirAsia, Air Greenland, GOL, and Virgin Atlantic instead.
In June 2021, American Airlines placed a conditional pre-order for up to 250 VX4 eTVOL aircraft, with an additional 100 options.
On Friday, Vertical Aerospace announced American Airlines has confirmed the delivery slots and the commitment of associated pre-delivery payments for 50 VX4 eVTOL aircraft.
Now, both parties will build upon their existing joint working group to collaborate on a framework to explore the future of advanced air mobility and prepare for the VX4’s entry into service, they said in a statement.
This commitment to pay pre-delivery payments and confirmation of slots reservations is the first of its kind for a major airline in the eVTOL industry. In the past couple of years, several eVTOL companies have announced around 4,500 supposed orders with clients all over the world. Nonetheless, these orders can be described more as commitments rather than firm orders.
The development of the eVTOL technology is slowly moving forward. In the United States, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) recently changed the course on the certification process for eVTOL aircraft.
Following the announcement by Vertical Aerospace and American Airlines, Stephen Fitzpatrick, Founder and CEO of the eVTOL company, said,
“We are delighted to have reached this major milestone with American Airlines on our eVTOL partnership. Together, we are making zero-emissions flight a reality for passengers traveling all over the world. “
Meanwhile, American Airlines Chief Financial Officer Derek Kerr added,
“Our partnership with Vertical is a great example of progress in our commitment to reducing carbon emissions throughout our airline and the industry. We have made great strides in simplifying our fleet with newer and more fuel-efficient aircraft, and we are proud to take part in another step toward the development of advanced air mobility. “
Vertical Aerospace has sold over 1,400 eVTOL aircraft, and its pre-order book is valued at around US $ 5.6 billion. Photo: Vertical Aerospace.
Vertical Aerospace unveiled its VX4 in August 2020. The company expects to have its first flight due in 2024.
The VX4 is an all-electric commercial aircraft capable of carrying four passengers and one pilot. It is projected to have speeds of up to 200 mph and a range of over 100 miles.
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The company expects its eVTOL aircraft to open up advanced air mobility to a whole new market of passengers and transform how people travel in urban areas.
Vertical Aerospace has conditional orders of over 1,400 eVTOL aircraft, and its pre-order book is valued at around US $ 5.6 billion. It has partnered up with companies such as Rolls-Royce, Honeywell, Microsoft, GKN, and Leonardo.
Earlier today, Vertical also announced that FLYINGROUP, one of Europe’s leading business jet operators, has conditionally pre-ordered up to 50 VX4 aircraft.
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