AutoFlight, an innovative eVTOL manufacturer, has recently announced a groundbreaking achievement that has placed them on the map as a serious contender in the emerging world of electric vertical takeoff and landing aircraft. According to the company’s press release, AutoFlight has completed the longest eVTOL flight ever, covering a distance of 250.3 kilometers on a single charge of its lithium-ion batteries. This remarkable feat was accomplished during a test flight at the company’s eVTOL testing facility in Jining, Shandong province, on Feb 23. The flight, which consisted of 20 circuits on a predetermined flight path, was remotely piloted by AutoFlight’s flight test team. This historic accomplishment has been recognized as the longest fully electric aircraft flight in history, surpassing the previous record of 248.8 km set by Joby Aviation in 2021.
AutoFlight’s long-range test flight is a crucial milestone in the development of its Prosperity I aircraft, which is currently undergoing continued testing towards the company’s ultimate goal of airworthiness certification in 2025 with the European Aviation Safety Agency. Omer Bar-Yohay, President of AutoFlight, stated, “This flight is a remarkable achievement that shows our aircraft’s capability, and we are excited to continue working towards our next goals all the way to EASA certification in 2025.”
The eVTOL market is widely viewed as the future of transportation due to its superior qualities, such as its ability to operate without fixed facilities such as airports and runways. It is a more affordable and environmentally friendly alternative to helicopters and is expected to be used extensively in urban and intercity travel scenarios. AutoFlight’s Prosperity aircraft uses rotors to lift the aircraft vertically for takeoff, then transitions to horizontal flight on the wing like a traditional airplane, making it one of the few eVTOL developers to have mastered this challenging transition phase from vertical to horizontal flight. The Generation 4 model used in the record-setting flight was designed by the legendary Frank Stephenson, whose portfolio includes iconic successes from brands such as Ferrari, Maserati, McLaren, and Mini. With the ability to carry four passengers in addition to a pilot and speeds of over 200 km/h, AutoFlight’s Prosperity aircraft is poised to revolutionize the future of air travel.