Irish aircraft rental company Avolon Holdings has agreed to launch zero-emission electric vertical take-off and landing (eVTOL) “flying taxi” services in Turkey with Istanbul-based Gozen Holding, owner of Freebird Airlines.
Under the partnership, Gozen will purchase or lease up to 50 battery-powered eVTOL aircraft from Avolon, with options to purchase or lease an additional 50. The plane, valued at around $2 billion, will be acquired by Dublin-based Avolon from British firm Vertical. Aerospace.
The business concept envisions flying taxis offering passengers relief from Istanbul’s heavy traffic, Avolon said. Turkey’s commercial capital is one of the most congested cities in the world.
Gozen, who also owns a travel agency, said he saw potential in reducing the environmental footprint of tourists visiting attractions such as Troy and Cappadocia.
Avolon is among launch customers for up to 1,000 eVTOL aircraft under development by Vertical Aerospace, which went public in New York in December after striking a $2.2 billion SPAC deal with Broadstone Acquisition Corp. In June last year, Avolon ordered 500 VX4 eVTOL planes from the Bristol-based company and then announced deals to place them with Japan Airlines, AirAsia and GOL in Brazil, Reuters reported.
Analysts warn that the eVTOL industry has yet to overcome regulatory hurdles.
Vertical is aiming for certification for 2024.