The CityAirbus eVTOL demonstrator made its first public flight demonstration on July 20 at Airbus Helicopters’ facilities in Donauwörth, Germany.
The demonstration coincided with a visit by Bavarian Prime Minister Markus Söder. According to an Airbus Helicopters spokesperson, around two dozen journalists also witnessed the flight — the first time a CityAirbus flight test has been witnessed by members of the media.
According to their reports, the aircraft hovered two to three meters above the ground for a few minutes before touching down again. Airbus told reporters that the company plans to relocate the aircraft to Manching, Germany, for flight envelope expansion at the end of August — a milestone that was previously expected early this year, but delayed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The 2.2-tonne, fully electric CityAirbus is one of two eVTOL demonstrators that Airbus has revealed publicly. The other is the tilt-wing Vahana, which concluded its flight test campaign in November 2019. Airbus has said that insights from both programs will inform its future approach to eVTOL aircraft for urban air mobility.
In a tweet thanking Söder for his visit, Airbus Helicopters CEO Bruno Even noted, “Support for current and future business like CityAirbus is crucial for the preservation of high tech jobs.”
Last month, Even tweeted a video of another CityAirbus test flight at the facilities in Donauwörth.