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5/1/2017 | 1 MINUTE READ

Successful test flight for Lilium’s electric VTOL jet

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The whole structure of the jet is made from carbon fiber custom built for Lilium.

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More news in the flying cars space: The Lilium Jet, the electric plane capable of vertical take-off and landing (VTOL), has completed a series of flight tests in the skies above Germany.

According to Lilium (Gilching, Bayern, Germany), the two-seater prototype executed a range of "complex maneuvers, including its signature mid-air transition from hover mode to wing-borne forward flight." Lilium is now developing a larger, five-seater version of the Jet, designed for on-demand air taxi and ridesharing services.

The Lilium Jet is a lightweight aircraft powered by 36 electric jet engines mounted to its wings via 12 moveable flaps. The whole structure of the jet is made from carbon fiber custom built for Lilium. The company said that the lightweight design for a VTOL jet is “even more important than for a normal airplane.”

The company claims that the jet is the “only electric aircraft capable of both VTOL and jet-powered flight, using its wings for lift, similar to a conventional airplane.”

This advanced capability consumes around 90% less energy than drone-style aircraft, enabling the Lilium Jet to achieve a range of more than 300 km with a maximum cruising speed of 300 km/h. In flight, the Jet’s power consumption per km will be comparable to an electric car. 

“Seeing the Lilium Jet take to the sky and performing sophisticated maneuvers with apparent ease is testament to the skill and perseverance of our amazing team,” says Lilium co-founder and CEO Daniel Wiegand. “We have solved some of the toughest engineering challenges in aviation to get to this point. The successful test flight program shows that our ground-breaking technical design works exactly as we envisioned. We can now turn our focus to designing the five seater production aircraft.”

Watch the test flight below:

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