Martin Warner hopes his six-seater Y6S Plus will make short trips within two years. The millionaire entrepreneur says the 125mph overhead cabin will carry a full load of passengers for as little as £ 100.
His company Autonomous Flight aims to start taking “pre-orders” for the battery-powered shuttles, which do not require runways, next month.
He called the move an “exciting announcement” for the electric vertical lift-off (eVTOL) industry: “We are getting closer and closer to a reality where drones will become a regular mode of transportation in cities. years away from this reality, not decades. “
It aims to have the Y6S Plus, which has six propellers and can cover up to 100 miles on a single charge, to be ready by 2024.
This is a development of the firm’s Y6S two-seater prototype, initially with a pilot but intended to be fully autonomous once the technology has been approved and safe.
Up to nine London routes are planned, including a 12-minute jump between Heathrow Airport and Charing Cross.
Three boats would serve each route and cities such as Manchester and Liverpool are also affected.
A source said: “It will become a very affordable form of transport. An air taxi for a typical 12 minute flight in a city like London will ultimately cost around £ 100 for a party of six – similar to a high end Uber fare. . ”
Mr. Warner, 49, added: “I am proud to say that autonomous flight is at the forefront of this disruptive technology.
“The past 12 months have been marked by key milestones for the company and we are enthusiastically taking this bold step from concept to prototype and eventual deployment.”
He added: “Governments and large corporations clearly see the growth potential offered and there is now a race to become a global leader in urban air mobility. “
Mr. Warner was born in Biggin Hill, Kent, but now lives in the United States.