Volkswagen Group China has released visuals of its first eVTOL, a private jet designed to serve Chinese customers traveling between Chinese megacities for business and leisure. Named the Flying Tiger, the aircraft is designed in conjunction with British design consultancy Tangerine and designed in conjunction with Sunward, a Chinese general aviation manufacturer.
The first fully functional prototype is currently undergoing flight testing, and further prototypes are under development. Throughout the design process, Tangerine worked closely with the Volkswagen and Sunward design team to ensure the fuselage design aligned with manufacturing processes and wind tunnel testing.
The style, format and layout of the eVTOL was heavily influenced by intensive user research with over 100 wealthy individuals across China. The eVTOL has eight fixed-up propellers and two rear-forward propulsion propellers. The aerodynamic cabin is located under the wings, away from the propellers, and is fitted with an aerodynamic “skid” that lifts the vehicle off the ground and facilitates passenger access to the cabin from the ground.
“It is a privilege to be part of VW China’s first foray into vertical mobility,” said Weiwei He, director of Tangerine. “It’s really exciting that this project is moving beyond flashy concept designs to focus on near delivery of working prototypes that are tested in the air. The exterior is just a taste of what’s to come and we look forward to showcasing the interior design and total customer experience in the near future.