XPeng Aeroht's X2 flying car has become the first manned eVTOL (electric vertical take-off and landing) product to receive such a permit in China.
(Image credit: XPeng Aeroht)
The X2 flying car from XPeng Aeroht, a subsidiary of XPeng, has received a conditional flight permit in China, marking an important step forward in the company's efforts to obtain regulatory green lights.
X2 recently received a conditional flight permit from the Civil Aviation Administration of China's Central and Southern Regional Administration, making it the first manned eVTOL (electric vertical take-off and landing) product to receive such a permit in China, according to a WeChat article by the company today.
Chinese civil aviation regulators allowed the X2 to fly under licensed conditions and issued XPeng Aeroht with a licensed flight certificate, according to the article.
X2, a two-seat manned flying vehicle developed by XPeng Aeroht, successfully made its maiden flight in June 2021 and has since conducted more than 3,000 test flights, according to the company.
After receiving the permit, XPeng Aeroht will continue to conduct a series of manned driving tests to accumulate data and experience in research and development and flight testing for mass production, the company said.
XPeng Aeroht was founded in 2013 and is now a technology division majority owned by XPeng and its chairman and CEO, He Xiaopeng.
At the Shanghai auto show in April 2021, the company unveiled the X1, which is the size of a regular car and can take off and land vertically in a parking space.
On July 16, 2021, Mr. He announced the fifth-generation flying vehicle X2 on Weibo, saying, "This marks another step closer to a more widely available and safe flying car."
On October 24, 2021, XPeng announced at its 1024 Tech Day event the sixth generation of XPeng Aeroht's flying car, a vehicle that can both drive like a normal car on land and fly in the air.
Mr. He said at the time that the company aims to have the flying car in mass production by 2024, and that the price is expected to be under RMB 1 million ($150,000).
At last year's 1024 Tech Day event, XPeng unveiled the latest version of XPeng Aeroht's flying car, the X3, showcasing a product that is closer to production status.
To accelerate its flying car development, XPeng Aeroht put its first trial plant into operation on July 25, 2022.
Located in Panyu district, Guangzhou, the 35,000-square-meter facility has a floor area of 20,000 square meters and includes two pilot production workshops, a power test center and a flying car test center.
It will be used mainly for pre-production, process validation and performance testing of flying cars before mass production, and will also be used to support pre-production research and testing of other projects.