SkyDrive Inc. (hereinafter "SkyDrive"), a leading Japanese eVTOL aircraft (*1) manufacturer headquartered in Toyota City, Japan, announced at Paris Air Show 2023 on June 19 that the company had signed a basic agreement with Suzuki Motor Corporation (hereinafter "Suzuki") for cooperation in manufacturing "SKYDRIVE" eVTOL aircraft (*2).
Image1: From left, Hidetoshi Kumashiro (Managing Officer and Executive General Manager, Suzuki) and Tomohiro Fukuzawa (CEO, SkyDrive)
SkyDrive will establish a wholly owned subsidiary (hereinafter "the manufacturing subsidiary") for the purpose of manufacturing its eVTOL aircraft "SKYDRIVE." With Suzuki, the manufacturing subsidiary will utilize a production facility owned by the Suzuki Group in Shizuoka Prefecture, Japan, and aims to start building the SkyDrive "SKYDRIVE" eVTOL aircraft by spring of 2024. Suzuki will also cooperate with the manufacturing subsidiary in securing human resources and making other preparations for the start of manufacturing. More specific terms and conditions will be agreed upon through ongoing discussions.
The "SKYDRIVE" eVTOL aircraft, to be built at Suzuki's production facility, is a three-seat, electric-powered lightweight aircraft with vertical takeoff and landing capabilities.
Comment by Toshihiro Suzuki, Suzuki Motor Corporation President
"We are excited to cooperate with SkyDrive as we ambitiously work towards creating valuable products that contribute to the realization of a world where people use the sky for their daily transportation."
Comment by Tomohiro Fukuzawa, SkyDrive Inc. CEO
"At Suzuki, all manufacturing activities are based on a concept, 'Smaller, Fewer, Lighter, Shorter, and Neater,' and SkyDrive is developing lightweight air mobilities. Suzuki and SkyDrive have been collaborating since March 2022 and we are very excited that SkyDrive will utilize the production facility of Suzuki to build our eVTOL 'SKYDRIVE.' In our pursuit to consistently manufacture safe and high-quality aircraft for the world, we are grateful for the valuable know-how we will learn from Suzuki, a global leader in automobile mass production. Suzuki and SkyDrive will work closely towards the shared goal."
About SkyDrive Inc.
SkyDrive was formally established in July 2018 after testing flying car concepts and prototypes from 2014 with the mission of "taking the lead in the once-in-a-century mobility revolution." Its vision is to create a future where everyone has access to eVTOLs as their daily transportation in Japan and across the world. The company succeeded in the first crewed flight test in Japan in 2019 and its eVTOL "SKYDRIVE" is in the process of acquiring its Japan Civil Aviation Bureau (JCAB) certification. SkyDrive has been selected as a company to participate in the Advanced Air Mobility (AAM) project at Expo 2025 Osaka, Kansai, Japan. SkyDrive is headquartered in Toyota, Aichi Prefecture. Tomohiro Fukuzawa is the CEO of the company.
For more information, please visit: https://en.skydrive2020.com/
About Suzuki Motor Corporation
Suzuki Motor Corporation is one of Japan's leading carmakers and a global motorcycle manufacturer. The company's non-vehicle products include outboard motors for boats and motorized wheelchairs. It builds its lineup on its own and through numerous subsidiaries and joint ventures outside Japan. Suzuki, established in 1920, is headquartered in Hamamatsu, Shizuoka Prefecture. Toshihiro Suzuki is the President of the company.
For more information, please visit: https://www.globalsuzuki.com
(*1) eVTOL is short for electric vertical takeoff and landing. eVTOL aircraft are characterized by electrification, a fully autonomous autopilot, and vertical takeoff and landing. It is also called Advanced Air Mobility (AAM) or Urban Air Mobility (UAM).
The above information is sourced from Japan's Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism (MLIT):
https://www.mlit.go.jp/common/001598463.pdf (dated March 2023, in Japanese)
(*2) Related Press Release: https://en.skydrive2020.com/archives/9455
Source: SkyDrive Inc.