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Thu, Mar 14, 2024

Japanese eVTOL Skydrive Begins Production

SD-05 eVTOL Aircraft Now Built by Sky Works

Japan's most high-profile eVTOL candidate, SkyDrive, has said that it has already begun working on building out the first handful of prototype aircraft.

The line is expected to one day produce up to 100 aircraft per year. The team behind it has been working with Suzuki subsidiary Sky Works to begin rolling out all their new SD-05s, paving the way to hold some public flight demonstrations at the 2025 Osaka World Expo. They’re on track to cut it pretty close, since the SD-05 is the larger, higher-capacity version of the already airworthy SD-03 that's already seen full scaled operation. From the looks of the scant glimpse behind the curtain we've gotten so far, SkyDrive could stand to fill up some of those shelves, too. But SkyDrive may not want to do things the American way, swinging for the fences out of the gate with billions of venture capital supporting their every risky move. Instead, a more levelheaded, consistent approach to growth might be the trick to see them through.

“Partnering with Suzuki, a renowned automotive manufacturer, is a momentous occasion for SkyDrive” said Tomohiro Fukuzawa, SkyDrive CEO. “It is the beginning of a new phase.  We share a goal of quality, innovation, and customer satisfaction, making them an ideal partner in our quest to revolutionize urban air mobility.”

Nobuo Kishi, President of Sky Works, was happy to see the SD-05 move to limited production so soon in its development cycle. “We are thrilled to begin production of the SKYDRIVE (SD-05) with Suzuki’s manufacturing specialists. This facility allows us to produce high-quality eVTOLs efficiently and effectively, ensuring we meet the needs of our customers.”

Funny enough, the firm has retained its initial Skydrive 2020 branding on its own web site - it may seem just a little outdated to the unusually internet-apt US market, but it's quite JDM in its own way.

FMI: www.en.skydrive2020.com

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