Aerofugia, the aviation subsidiary of the Chinese automobile group Geely, annouced that the 5-seat eVTOL prototype named “AE200 X01” made the first flight in hovering mode on 17th January 2023.
The prototype has eight propulsion units four of which in the front can tilt for both vertical takeoff and landing and cruise flight while the other four units in the back are in fixed position for VTOL operation only. This configuration is a big deviation from the full-size mock-up of the previous design concept named TF-2 which had lift+cruise configuation without any tilting function. Notably the name of the flying prototype is also different from the mock-up whose name TF-2 back then was obviously a continuity of the TF-1 roadable airplane (aka a real “flying car”) of Terrafugia which was acquired by Geely in 2017 but whose operation has been literally shut down in 2019 when Geely laid off the majority of the staff. The change of the name may indicate a change of eVTOL product plan of Aerofugia who formed a joint-venture in China with Volocopter in 2021.
According to Aerofugia, they applied to the Chinese regulator CAAC for the eVTOL certification in November 2022. In December 2022 the final assembly and all tests of key system of the prototype were completed and the first flight was accomplished on 17th January 2023.
Original press release (in Chinese lanuage only): https://mp.weixin.qq.com/s/P4Q50jyjycyr9Qe4xR2CNQ
Munich-based advanced air mobility (AAM) startup Skyroads AG has been making progress at the automated flight test site at Augsburg Airport with partners to develop a large-scale real-life laboratory for research and testing of AAM concepts.
This AAM test site project is co-funded by Bavaria government and aims at improving communication technologies in aviation so that the open, automated and interoperable Skyroads flight control system can also be operated safely in metropolitan regions.
Skyroads says in the press release that “(it) enables operators of fleets, ground infrastructure and vertiports (take-off and landing areas for AAM aircraft) as well as aircraft manufacturers to test their vehicles and infrastructures at an early stage of development – while the Skyroads system guarantees the safety of the test flights.” “At the same time, the company provides support with the test flight application procedures, facilitating the respective approval by the authorities. The partners include Supernal as the AAM division of the Korean Hyundai Group, Flix, the Technical University of Munich with several chairs, Hybrid-Airplane Technologies, FlyNow Aviation, Horyzn, Blueflite, Amazilia Aerospace and Manta Aircraft from Italy.”
For Skyroads and Augsburg Airport, the next step is to design and establish an operating agreement that regulates the operation of test and demonstration flights without disrupting conventional air traffic and the neighbourhood of the airport.
After opening the eFF the Forum started with some Chinese only sessions. in the European night. The first sessions International sessions with simultaneous translation will start at 8 :30 CET time – you can wach at
The yearly e-flight-Forum will start tomorrow as an Hybrid event with a real session in Kushan (Shanghai Region) at 9 am China (Beijing time = 2 am CET) with the Chinese sessions.
The international sessions will start at 8:30 CET with speakers from around the world in a Zoom Session which is connected with the real session in China via large screen. You can watch for free in a you tube life stream under .
At an official event as part of the EU funded Corus Xuam programm at the DLR test center in Magdeburg Cochsted. A Volodrone large UAS performed several automated Flights – for example an evasive manoeuvre in a planed flight to avoid an SAR Helicopter.
Florian Hermann Bavarian Minister of state opened the first AAM Forum in Oberpfaffenhofen. With many international players like Rolls-Royce, Airbus, Autoflight as well as leading Universities like TU Munich.