Vertical Aerospace’s VX4 eVTOL aircraft will now join a ridesharing platform that services Southeast Asia. Avolon, an international aircraft leasing company, has signed a memorandum of understanding with AirAsia Aviation Group that includes leasing at least 100 of Vertical’s VX4 aircraft.
In June, Avolon pre-ordered 500 VXA aircraft from Vertical, valued at US$2 billion, with the intention of placing the eVTOLs with its global airline customers. Avolon has now placed 90% of its VX4 order book, which includes 250 with Gol and Grupo Comporte in Brazil, up to 100 with Japan Airlines in Japan, and at least 100 with AirAsia.
Vertical has secured a total of 1,350 conditional pre-orders of its eVTOL aircraft, worth about $5.4 billion — what it believes to be the largest pre-order book in the industry. Along with Avolon, its customers include American Airlines, Virgin Atlantic, Iberojet, Bristow Group, and Marubeni.
Vertical said the leasing arrangement between Avolon and AirAsia is the first placement or pre-order for Vertical since the eVTOL developer listed on the New York Stock Exchange in December.
The VX4 is a piloted four-passenger eVTOL, targeting speeds of up to 200 miles per hour (322 kilometers per hour) and a range of more than 100 mi (161 km).