The first Joby Aviation electric vehicle take-off and landing (eVTOL) aircraft to be manufactured on its production line has been granted permission to begin test flights.
On June 28, 2023, the eVTOL frontrunner announced it has received a Special Airworthiness Certificate from the Federal Aviation Authority (FAA) for the first aircraft built at its Pilot Production Line in Marina, United States (US).
The aircraft is expected to become the first ever eVTOL aircraft to be delivered to a customer when it moves to Edwards Air Force Base in 2024 to be operated by Joby as part of the Company’s Agility Prime contract with the US Air Force, worth up to $131 million.
Joby has been flying full size aircraft since 2017 and its pre-production prototype aircraft have flown more than 30,000 miles since 2019.
The new production prototype builds on that experience and marks another important step toward achieving FAA certification and production at scale.
“This achievement is the culmination of years of investment in our processes and technology and it marks a major step on our journey to scaled production. We’re proud to have launched production in our home state of California. I’m incredibly grateful to the Joby team for their commitment to ensuring Joby remains the clear leader in this new sector and to Toyota for sharing their knowledge and experience with us over many years. Their support has been indispensable in helping us reach this point,” JoeBen Bevirt, founder and CEO of Joby, said.
Joby is also celebrating the key role Toyota, the project’s largest external shareholder, has played in the design of the Pilot Production Line, as well as in the production and assembly of the aircraft.
The two companies recently signed a long-term agreement for the supply of powertrain and actuation components.
Joby plans to begin commercial passenger operations in 2025.