Flying car company Kittyhwak announced that it is going to shut down
Kittyhawk, a manufacturer of flying cars, has announced its impending closure. Sebastian Thrun, a co-founder of Google, provided funding for its establishment in 2010. Thrun is a self-driving expert who has contributed to a number of Kittyhawk initiatives. The shutdown’s official cause was not disclosed. However, some media outlets claim that it is because the business changed its strategy or focus as it moved from project to project. Kittyhawk announced on social media, “We have made the decision to wind down Kittyhawk. We’re still working on the details of what’s next. ” Before altering its operations to concentrate on quieter electric aircraft two years ago, Kittyhawk had built and flown more than 100 aircraft, performing more than 25,000 successful flights.
In 2019, the company also founded a joint venture called Wisk. Boeing, a builder of aircraft, was involved. Wisk, which received $450 million (£390 million) in financing this year and demonstrates Boeing’s aim to make flying cars a reality, will continue to run even if Kittyhawk is shut down. But as more companies try to make cars that can fly, Kittyhawk’s failure comes at the same time that they want to show that flying cars can work even in densely populated places like London and the UK.
Last year, Stephen Fitzpatrick projected that flying cars would be commonplace in the UK by the middle of the 2020s. With 1,000 aircraft already on order from airlines, he intends to offer flights based at London Heathrow that will take 15 minutes and cost £50 per passenger. His flying taxi company, Vertical Aerospace, already has 1,000 aircraft on order from airlines. Additionally, European rivals like Germany’s Lilium and Slovakia’s Klein Vision are swarming in. The second seems to be thinking about a route from London to Paris that would take just over two hours and has gotten a certificate of airworthiness from the Slovak Transport Authority.
Another company that produces cars that can be transformed into gyrocopters in 10 minutes is Pal-V. To fly them, the drivers do not require a pilot’s license. In April, the Dutch company opened offices in Coventry and Oxford and began providing flying vehicle driving courses. A trip to the Cotswolds from central London may take a little over an hour at a 100 mph flight speed, cutting journey times in half, skipping traffic, and providing birds-eye views of the countryside, should businesses like Klein Vision and Pal-V obtain full certification from UK regulators. The closure of Kittyhawk marks the end of a chapter for one of the most well-known eVTOL pioneers. It shows how challenging the market is to navigate. The company’s slogan, “If anyone can achieve this, we can,” was still in place as of Wednesday.