California-based electric vertical takeoff and landing (eVTOL) aircraft manufacturer Archer Aviation plans to build up to 250 all-electric air taxis in 2025, with an ambitious long-term goal to produce up to 2,000 air vehicles annually starting in 2028.
In the interview with Reuters, which was released on October 24, 2022, Archer Aviation chief executive Adam Goldstein confirmed the manufacturer aims to scale up eVTOL aircraft production in a few years’ time..
According to Goldstein, Archer plans to make 250 eVTOLs in 2025, then increase production levels to 500 units in 2026 and be capable of building approximately 650 Midnight aircraft in 2027.
“And then we scale it up to around 2,000 aircraft per year,” the CEO was cited as saying.
What do we know about Archer Aviation’s Midnight eVTOL so far?
Midnight is Archer Aviation’s second eVTOL aircraft, which has not been officially unveiled yet. The company plans to give more details of the first production version of its newest vehicle during an Open House event on November 16, 2022.
The Midnight project follows Maker, Archer’s first demonstrator aircraft which was unveiled in June 2021.
According to the manufacturer, Midnight is being designed to be used in Archer’s aerial ridesharing services across highly populated cities in the United States, such as Miami, Florida, Los Angeles, and California. Equipped with twelve electric propellers, it will feature a V-tail and tricycle fixed-wheeled landing gear.
Archer says Midnight is expected to have a payload of more than 1,000 lbs (453 kilograms) and will be able to carry four passengers and a pilot onboard. The company estimates its newest eVTOL will operate journeys of up to 60 miles (around 100 kilometers) while reaching speeds of around 150 mph (241 km/h). It will take approximately 10 minutes of turnaround time for the aircraft to charge.
The manufacturer intends to complete the FAA certification process in 2024.
The model has already gained the attention of one of the largest airlines in the US. In August 2022, United Airlines made a $10m pre-delivery payment for 100 Midnight aircraft. United Airlines aims to become the first air carrier in the US to introduce eVTOL aircraft into commercial passenger services, part of a wider gioal to achieve carbon neutrality by 2050.