At the Paris Air Show, held on June 17-23, fellow Dutch firm GKN Fokker signed a MoU with PAL-V to assist with the design, certification, engineering and production of current and future versions of PAL-V’s flying car, the Liberty.
The MoU with GKN Fokker will both accelerate testing and production of the Liberty, as well as provide PAL-V with the backing of a larger, established aerospace company, which will be beneficial for competing with other companies in the UAM industry.
The Liberty is currently undergoing compliance demonstration, the final stage for certification, at the company’s headquarters in Raamsdonksveer, which is expected to finish sometime in late 2020 – early 2021.
GKN plans on staying heavily involved with the Liberty even after initial production and manufacturing. One of the possible areas to explore is the possibility of producing specialized versions of the Liberty at a GKN Fokker site, aimed towards specific industries such as first response, police, and military. The added security and data provided by GKN Fokker’s production facilities are an important factor for such an undertaking. According to Robert Dingemanse, founder and CEO of PAL-V, “this is important as the interest from professional customers is growing rapidly.”
Why it’s important: The MoU between GKN Fokker and PAL-V firmly establishes the latter as one of the stronger competitors in the UAM market. The Liberty, scheduled to be one of the first, if not the first, flying cars to be released for private purchase, will be the first taste of a true flying car experienced by the public. While included with a hefty price tag, the success of the Liberty could mean that future versions may end up no more expensive than a regular car.
Sources // Flight Global