Suzuki signs SkyDrive deal to begin building flying vehicles

Suzuki ditches MotoGP to instead set its sights slightly higher as SkyDive ‘flying car’ manufacturing deal confirmed


SUZUKI has announced a deal with Japanese innovators SkyDrive to begin manufacturing an electric aircraft for carrying one to three passengers.

The battery-powered ‘flying cars’ will now be built utilising Suzuki’s Shizuoka Prefecture plant, although the company will remain the property of SkyDrive. The plan is for production of the vehicles to begin in 2024. Prior to building the vehicles, Suzuki will also assist with laying the foundations that will allow production to take place, including securing human resources. The move comes after Suzuki confirmed in 2022 that it was helping SkyDrive carry out R&D, then for a smaller and lighter single-person flying car project.

Speaking about the partnership, Hidetoshi Kumashiro, Executive General Manager, Suzuki said:

‘I'm very excited to be working together with SkyDrive. We will make ambitious strides toward the development of products of superior value, so that we can contribute to the realization of air mobility, which utilizes the sky for daily transportation.’


What will Suzuki and Skydrive produce?

The product that SkyDrive will be producing is a Vertical Take-off and Landing (VTOL) type aircraft called the SD-05. It has a maximum capacity of three (one pilot and two passengers), a nine-mile range and power coming from 12 motors that drive lightweight composite rotors. The craft’s maximum cruising speed is 100kph, and it’s primarily designed for use in urban and built-up areas.

This won't be SkyDrive’s first foray into the sky, in 2020 it debuted its SD-03 a lightweight one-person aircraft powered by eight motors and rotors.

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