Dutch aviation startup ELECTRON Aviation has inked an agreement with Twente Airport, in the next step of its plans to launch a zero-emissions short-haul flight service from 2027.
The startup’s planned fleet of electric air taxis will transport up to four passengers at a time to various European cities within a 500km radius of the airport.
“To be clear, that gets you to Berlin, London, or Paris, all in under 2 hours,” said Josef Mouris, CEO and co-founder of ELECTRON.
The startup’s Electron5 plane, which is still in the prototype phase, will fly at around 300km/h with a max range of 750km on a single charge. By aiming for smaller aircraft, the company hopes to build out its fleet at pace.
“To fly meaningful distances within this decade, we had to compromise on the aircraft size, limiting ourselves to five seats. Which, if you think about it, is the perfect size for our on-demand business model,” said Mouris.
The startup plans to provide a quick, easy service akin to the Uber of planes — offering a faster and greener way to travel between major European centres. The plane needs 800m of airstrip to take off, which means it can launch from most regular airports, the startup said.
Previously, Josef was quoted saying that a 400km trip in one of his air taxis would set you back around €225. However, in a press release yesterday, the CEO said the “low operating costs” of the aircraft (in comparison with other low-emissions alternatives like hydrogen) would eventually enable the startup to “match or beat” the price of an economy-class plane ticket.
The startup is part of Electric Flying Connection (EFC), a Dutch consortium of companies that recently submitted a funding application to the Dutch Growth Fund to scale battery-electric flying in the country.
Jan Schuring, CEO of Twente Airport, which joined the consortium this year, said that demand for improved connectivity in the region was high, both within the Netherlands and for cross-border travel to Germany, France, and the UK.
By bringing in ELECTRON aviation as the second operator, Twente Airport looks to position itself as the airport of choice for electric air taxi startups looking to launch their services in the country.
ELECTRON also signed a similar agreement with Groningen airport in 2021 and plans to roll out a fleet of battery-electric, zero-emissions aircraft at both airports in 2027.
Original Source: https://thenextweb.com/news/dutch-startup-targets-european-intercity-air-taxi-service-from-2027