Joby Aviation, Inc., a company developing electric vertical take-off and landing (eVTOL) aircraft for commercial passenger service, has successfully performed an exhibition flight in New York City yesterday, marking the first electric air taxi flight in the city and the first time Joby has flown in an urban setting.
The aircraft was flown from the iconic Downtown Heliport in Manhattan, New York, where New York City Mayor, Eric Adams, announced the city’s intention to electrify the heliport, laying the groundwork for New York to adopt clean, quiet flight. Joby’s Manhattan flight and participation in the press conference – during which the aircraft is expected to fly again – follows several days of preparation flights at the HHI Heliport in Kearny, New Jersey.
“By electrifying one of the most famous heliports in the world, New York is demonstrating global leadership in the adoption of electric air travel. We’re grateful for the support of the city, and we’re honored to be working with visionary partners like Delta Air Lines to bring our air taxi service to this market,” said JoeBen Bevirt, Founder and CEO of Joby Aviation. “We plan to make quiet, emissions-free flight an affordable, everyday reality for New Yorkers, while significantly reducing the impact of helicopter noise.”
Joby previously announced through its partnership with Delta Air Lines that it expects New York to be one of its early launch markets after receiving certification from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). The company plans to offer fast, quiet journeys using its piloted, four-passenger electric aircraft, which has zero operating emissions. Joby’s aircraft is optimized for rapid, back-to-back flights and can fly up to 100 miles on a single charge, covering 99% of all trips taken today across New York City’s five boroughs. While traveling from Manhattan to John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK) can take more than an hour by car, Joby expects the trip to take just seven minutes by air.
Joby and Delta are working closely with the Port Authority of New York and the New York City Economic Development Corporation (EDC) as they plan for initial operations, including the development of infrastructure at JFK and LaGuardia International Airport (LGA). This builds on significant recent investments Delta has made in upgrading the customer experience at its New York hubs.
“Delivering exceptional experiences for our customers is why Delta has invested over $7B in New York City, especially at our LaGuardia and JFK hubs,” said Gail Grimmett, SVP of Sustainability Performance and Strategic Partnerships at Delta. “Today’s announcement demonstrates the great progress that’s been made toward launching clean, quiet and convenient air taxi services for Delta customers traveling to and from New York, and is a testament to our innovative partners at Joby and the support of Mayor Eric Adams in advancing new and sustainable technologies.”