SkyDrive Inc., a prominent Japanese electric vertical takeoff and landing (eVTOL) aircraft manufacturer, has announced renewed collaboration within their existing Suzuki Motor Corporation partnership. This partnership, established in March 2022, signifies the level of commitment from both participating companies in the growth of the aerial mobility industry. Since March of 2022 then, both companies have made considerable progress, culminating in an agreement on manufacturing in June 2023.
The cornerstone of this collaboration is the establishment of the SkyDrive Manufacturing Plant, operated by SkyDrive’s subsidiary, Sky Works Inc., in Iwata-city, Shizuoka. This facility, set to commence operations in the spring of 2024, will produce up to 100 eVTOLs per year, including the “SKYDRIVE (SD-05).” Suzuki’s involvement in this venture underscores its commitment to advancing the future of transportation.
India is a focal point for the strategic partnership’s business development efforts, with a specific emphasis on market expansion. SkyDrive and Suzuki are actively engaged in research and development, manufacturing planning, and market development, particularly in India. This venture aims to provide eVTOL solutions for areas in India frequented by tourists visiting historical sites and religious pilgrims traversing challenging terrain.
The collaboration aligns with Suzuki’s experience in India and addresses pressing concerns, including air pollution and urban congestion, through innovative eVTOL solutions. By partnering with local stakeholders and identifying suitable use cases, SkyDrive and Suzuki intend to revolutionize mobility and contribute to the mobility evolution in India.
The partnership’s achievements and innovations will be on full display at the Japan Mobility Show 2023. SkyDrive will showcase its scaled-down SKYDRIVE (SD-05) at Suzuki’s booth, offering a glimpse into the future of aerial mobility. Additionally, the event will feature the full-size SD-03 Mock-Up, symbolizing the groundbreaking mobility solutions the collaboration aims to deliver.
SkyDrive Inc., founded in 2018, has been on a remarkable journey, with the mission of leading the mobility revolution of the century. The company’s vision of making eVTOLs accessible for daily transportation is well on its way to becoming a reality. Having already achieved the first crewed flight test in Japan in 2019, SkyDrive is currently in the process of acquiring Japan Civil Aviation Bureau (JCAB) certification.
Why it’s important: The partnership with Suzuki and its participation in the Advanced Air Mobility (AAM) project at Expo 2025 Osaka, Kansai, Japan, demonstrate SkyDrive’s commitment to help shape the future of aerial mobility. With a focus on innovation and sustainability, this collaboration promises to revolutionize the way we travel.