Google co-founder Larry Page shows off his autonomous flying taxi

Larry Page-backed air taxi start-up could beat Uber to the punch

The company is testing a new kind of fully electric, self-piloting flying taxi, which is a completely different project from the one seen previous year in a viral video of a single-pilot recreational aircraft, which was being tested over water.

Negotiations between Kitty Hawk and the New Zealand government have been going on for about 18 months, with multiple government agencies pledging to "streamline" the process of approval for a flying-taxi trial, according to Stuff.

The Cora features a lift-and-cruise configuration, which has emerged as one of three popular categories for the emerging class of electric-powered vertical takeoff and landing (eVTOL) air taxis. The next version that Kitty Hawk registered 2 August had a wider fuselage with room for two occupants.

Mr Page's wholly owned aviation firm Kitty Hawk - named after the Wright brothers' home town in North Carolina - has unveiled an air-taxi prototype eight-years in the making.

The company, Kitty Hawk, released a video and statement debuting the vehicle, called Cora, today (March 13).

A flying vehicle startup backed by Larry Page, the co-founder of Google, has stolen a march on Uber by testing autonomous "air taxis" that could be carrying passengers by 2021. Cora has a range of 100 kilometers and a top speed of 177 kilometers per hour and it can fly at heights of between 150 meters and 900 meters.

Details: Cora uses 12 rotors to take off like a helicopter and then fly like an airplane.

This time around, though, Kitty Hawk's ambitions are bigger.

The US Federal Aviation Administration now lacks a certification basis to accept the airworthiness of such vehicles to transport fare-paying passengers.

"A place that could be more than just a willing airfield".

Developers of the flying taxis say that they're much quieter than helicopters. Boeing bought Aurora Flight Sciences, Airbus made an investment in Blade, and Uber is already working on the same idea with Uber Elevate.

On Tuesday, regulators in New Zealand approved plans to develop and test the futuristic mode of transport.

It has been clear for several years that improvements in batteries, electric motors, and software would make it possible to build a vehicle like this.

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