Bell Helicopter unveils air taxi design at CES 2019

The air taxi is powered by a hybrid-electric propulsion system from Safran and features Bell’s signature powered lift concept incorporating six tilting ducted fans.

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Bell Helicopter (Fort Worth, TX, US), a Textron Inc. (Providence, RI, US) company, recently revealed its Bell Nexus vertical-takeoff-and-landing (VTOL) air taxi vehicle during CES 2019.

The air taxi is powered by a hybrid-electric propulsion system and features Bell’s signature powered lift concept incorporating six tilting ducted fans.

Several companies including Bell, Safran (Paris, France), EPS (New Richmond, WI, US), Thales (La Défense, France), Moog (Elma, NY, US) and Garmin (Olathe, KS, US), are collaborating on Bell’s VTOL aircraft and on-demand mobility solutions. Bell will lead the design, development and production of the VTOL systems. Safran will provide the hybrid propulsion and drive systems, EPS will provide the energy storage systems, Thales will provide the Flight Control Computer (FCC) hardware and software, Moog will develop the flight control actuation systems and Garmin will integrate the avionics and the vehicle management computer (VMC).

“As space at the ground level becomes limited, we must solve transportation challenges in the vertical dimension — and that’s where Bell's on-demand mobility vision takes hold,” says Mitch Snyder, president and CEO, Bell. “The industry has anticipated the reveal of our air taxi for some time, so Bell is very proud of this moment. We believe the design, taken with our strategic approach to build this infrastructure, will lead to the successful deployment of the Bell Nexus to the world.”