FlyBlade India (BLADE India), a joint venture between Hunch Ventures and Blade Air Mobility, Inc., and Eve Air Mobility, announced a strategic partnership that includes a non-binding order of up to 200 electric vertical take-off and landing (eVTOL or Electric Vertical Aircraft, EVA) vehicles, service and support, and Eve’s Urban Air Traffic Management (UATM) software solution. The companies also plan to collaborate on a three-month pilot project connecting passengers using helicopters.
India is a unique market with its vast expanse, accessibility concerns, traffic congestion and regulations. As the pioneers of providing short-haul air mobility services in India, BLADE India will act as Eve’s on-ground knowledge partner to create the Urban Air Mobility (UAM) ecosystem. The data collected through BLADE India’s customer experience and operations will be used to further develop Eve’s eVTOL, service and support solutions, and its UATM software. BLADE India will initially underwrite 50,000 hours of flight time per year using Eve’s eVTOL in the country.
“India’s traffic congestion woes are only expected to get worse. This partnership allows us to leverage Eve’s deep expertise in not just EVA design but also in the infrastructure required to support UAM,” said Amit Dutta, managing director, BLADE India.
“We are thrilled about partnering with BLADE India and pioneering the urban air mobility market in the country, which has the potential to be one of the largest markets globally. This initial order will allow us to enter into service in India and further develop the ecosystem according to the community’s needs. We look forward to offering the people of India a zero-emission UAM solution in the future that will be quiet, efficient, and accessible,” said André Stein, co-CEO of Eve.
The emergence of electric aviation with eVTOL vehicles is expected to significantly reduce the carbon footprint, noise and cost of flying, making it more accessible to the masses.