Everyday flight could soon become a reality for Kiwis after Air New Zealand announced it will be collaborating with the world's first autonomous electric air taxi, the airline and Zephyr Airworks said in a joint statement today.
Air New Zealand CEO Christopher Luxon says the airline is committed to embracing new technologies making life easier, as well as the potential for cleaner energy options for travel.
"Both companies see the potential for our airspace to free people from the constraints of traffic and its associated social, economic and environmental impacts," Mr Luxon said.
"Through the development of their autonomous electric air taxi Cora, the possibility of getting from A to B quickly and safely, and also relieving the impact of polluting emissions, is very real indeed."
Zephyr Airworks CEO Fred Reid says the company is delighted to be fostering a close relationship with the national carrier to "make sure everyday flight becomes a reality for people around the world".
"One day, everyday people across the globe will be able to use Cora to bring flight into their lives. While we are not at that point yet, we are showing people what is possible. That is why we are excited to be drawing on Air New Zealand's wealth of operational expertise in the New Zealand market," Mr Reid said.
"We are applying everything that revolutionised the world of communications to transport – we are showing people what is possible. There is also the long-term economic and environmental advantages that will benefit future generations."