Hyundai, KT and Incheon Airport start planning for flying cars
Hyundai Motor, Hyundai Engineering and Construction (Hyundai E&C), KT and the Incheon International Airport Corporation have agreed to work together on developing the airborne vehicle industry, with plans to launch flying cars by 2025.
A memorandum of understanding (MOU) was signed at the airport corporation’s office in Incheon on Friday, Hyundai Motor announced Sunday.
They will be working on the construction and operation of vertiports, which are vertical landing sites for flying vehicles, and jointly designing a road map for the urban air transportation industry.
The government aims to commercialize urban air mobility (UAM) services in the domestic market in 2025, initially permitting a few routes in Seoul. It intends to gradually increase the number of routes and terminals.
Under the latest MOU, Hyundai Motor will develop, produce and commercialize UAM vehicles. It has already demonstrated its concept for a flying taxi, dubbed S-A1, in a joint effort with Uber Elevate at CES 2020 in Las Vegas in January.
Hyundai E&C will build the infrastructure for vertiports, while KT will construct the necessary telecommunications infrastructure, including a traffic management system for unmanned aerial vehicles.
The state-run airport corporation will build the relevant infrastructure at Incheon International Airport and connect existing air traffic management systems with the UAM traffic management system.
According to the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport, the UAM market in Korea is projected to be worth 13 trillion won ($11.2 billion) by 2040, while the global market will be worth 730 trillion won.
“To build the relevant ecosystem in a megacity like Seoul, infrastructure and business models need to be properly prepared,” said Shin Jai-won, Hyundai Motor executive vice president and head of the UAM division. “The four companies have expressed a strong will to open the UAM age through this MOU."
BY JIN MIN-JI [firstname.lastname@example.org]