XPeng AeroHT’s modular ‘flying car’ design gets certified, moving closer to commercial operations

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XPeng’s eVTOL arm, AeroHT, announced its latest milestone today in a quest to achieve commercial operations of its all-electric “flying cars” in China. The company has successfully received design certification from the powers that be for its air module vehicle, codenamed X3-F, bringing the technology one step closer to flight certification and customer deliveries.

AeroHT is an affiliate of XPeng Inc., which is majority owned by the company and its founder, He Xiaopeng, and specializes in developing electric Vertical Takeoff and Landing (eVTOL) vehicles. Since beginning operations over a decade ago, AeroHT has conducted tens of thousands of safe flights, collecting data to develop safe, domestic electric aircraft for commercial use.

Much of that early flight success has come from its X2 “flying car,” an eVTOL that shares design DNA with XPeng brand EVs. However, during XPeng’s annual 1024 event last fall, AeroHT unveiled two new flying car designs – an actual flying car called the X3 that can drive, park, and take off on its own, as well as a modular EV that transports a separate eVTOL in its rear.

The latter is expected to enter scaled production in 2025 ahead of customer deliveries in China, giving customers the ability to navigate the roads and the skies simultaneously. Before then however, AeroHT’s technology must achieve airworthiness.

Today, XPeng AeroHT shared that its modular “flying car” is one step closer to that feat.

  • XPeng Flying Car

XPeng flying car design certified in China

Per a release from XPeng AeroHT earlier today, its X3-F EV/eVTOL combo has had its Type Certificate application accepted by the Civil Aviation Administration of Central and Southern China (CAAC). Per AeroHT:

Type Certificate (TC) is an approval of the design of civil aviation products (civil aircraft, aircraft engines, or propellers), issued by the Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC) to the design unit of civil aviation products in accordance with the “Regulations on the Qualification Approval of Civil Aviation Products and Parts” (CCAR-21). This TC application acceptance represents the authority’s recognition of XPeng AeroHT’s comprehensive capabilities and project feasibility.

XPeng AeroHT explains that the Type Certificate applies specifically to the air module (eVTOL) portion of its incoming “flying car,” which also consists of a 6×6 AWD ground module (EV). Following the design certification from the CAAC, XPeng AeroHT states its modular “flying car” can move forward in seeking airworthiness certification.

From there, the electric aviation arm can begin production plans and proceed with its plans for scaled production and customer deliveries next year. This is an exciting development process to follow, and we will be sure to share its progress each step of the way.

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