EHang has unveiled the logistics version of its flagship product EHang 216 – the “EHang 216L”, for short-to-medium-haul air cargo transport logistics in both urban and rural areas. The 216L boasts a payload capacity of over 400 pounds, which is notably higher than many urban cargo drones currently on the market.
Similar to the EHang 216F passenger drone, The EHang 216L drone employs a fully redundant safety design and particularly, a distributed electric propulsion configuration consisting of 8 arms and 16 independent motors and propellers. The design delivers the key characteristics for which EHang is known: safety, autonomy, cluster management, interconnection and clean energy.
The high payload capability of the EHang 216L opens up more commercial opportunities for the EHang in various urban and rural aerial logistics use cases that require frequent and point-to-point flight tasks. For example, EHang 216 hopes to use the 216L to transport agricultural products (e.g. tea, fruit, etc.) between communities in mountainous regions with poor road conditions. The aircraft can also be deployed to deliver supplies and oil samples for offshore oil rigs autonomously, replenish supplies in busy international ports more efficiently, and respond to disaster relief and emergency supply needs more effectively than traditional solutions.
EHang’s Founder, Chairman and CEO Hu Huazhi said, “We’re thrilled to unveil another new version of AAV following the EHang 216F. The EHang 216L will meet the demand for heavy-lift AAVs for short-to-medium-haul aerial logistics. With increasing payloads and flight ranges, aerial logistics is expected to be one of the initial commercial applications of AAVs as it has higher efficiencies but lower emissions than the conventional ground transportation. The launch of the EHang 216L also complements our existing aerial logistics AAV portfolio, which consists of the medium-sized Falcon B and the small-sized GD 2.0X. It also enables us to meet customer needs in various aerial logistics use cases.”
EHang notes that According to Frost & Sullivan, the urban air mobility (“UAM”) global logistics market could reach US $46 billion by 2023, and China is projected to be the largest regional market in the world in 2023, accounting for 45% of the global logistics UAM market.
Why it matters: Building upon the success of the EHang 216 passenger aircraft, the 216L promises to deliver on the need for aerial urban vehicles with high-capacity cargo carrying capabilities. The EHang 216L’s cargo capacity of 200kg makes it likely winner as it can deliver far more than just a few packages as offered by other competitors. With the EHang 216L, EHang makes its AAV (autonomous aerial vehicle) offerings even more comprehensive, and it will be exciting to see how customers utilize the payload capabilities of the aircraft in the near future.
Souce: EHang press release