The PANTALA Concept H Travels at 186 MPH and Has a 155 Mile Range
Last month, Pantuo Aviation revealed the PANTALA Concept H, a sleek-looking flying taxi concept that has strong similarities to Lilium's ducted fan eVTOL aircraft at the same time as featuring some key design differences.
As little was announced in the way of specifications or development progress at the time, we reached out to Pantuo, who sent us information on their new concept via a company spokesperson.
'Large-passenger-airliner levels of safety'
According to Pantuo Aviation's representative, the all-electric PANTALA Concept H has a range of 155 miles (250 km) and will be able to travel at speeds of over 186 mph (300 km/h). The aircraft uses lithium-ion batteries and features 22 large-diameter electric ducted fans rather than open rotors. Much in the same fashion as Lilium's seven-seater aircraft, which the German company aims to bring into service by 2024, the PANTALA's fans provide added redundancy, meaning an enhanced level of safety for passengers. One factor that sets the PANTALA Concept H apart from the Lilium flying taxi, however, is the fact that its entire wing tilts to change from vertical to normal flight mode.
Pantuo's spokesperson told us that the aircraft's "next generation, multi-redundant, core integrated vehicle avionics, and power systems [will] enable PANTALA Concept H to achieve large-passenger-airliner levels of safety." The flying taxi's "advanced computing power and network capability," meanwhile, "make it ready for the coming revolution in autonomy."
As for Pantuo Aviation's name, the company's spokesperson said the word Pantuo is the transliteration of PANTALA, the name of its eVTOL aircraft. The name PANTALA itself comes from a combination of the ancient Greek prefix "pan," meaning "all", and "Talaria", the winged sandals worn by Hermès, son of Zeus. The name also has a double meaning as, in Chinese, "Pan" stands for a large mountain stone, symbolizing persistence. "Tuo," meanwhile, means to widen and to explore. The company said it chose its name to represent how it aims to widen the reach of human mobility.
Pantuo Aviation aims to start its flying taxi services by 2027
Pantuo also revealed to us that it is currently developing a sub-scaled flight model that will be used to test the in-house technologies that will be used on the finalized model, all of which are developed with support from industry partners. Pantuo Aviation said it plans to perform its first flight test of this prototype model around the end of the year, before starting development of the full model in 2022. The company aims to earn certification and start its service by 2027 at the latest.
eVTOL flying taxi models have the potential to vastly reduce commuting and travel times while simultaneously transforming urban air spaces. Several other firms have a headstart over Pantuo, such as the aforementioned Lilium, and Germany's Volocopter, which also aims to start its services by 2024. However, if Pantuo Aviation manages to produce an aircraft that looks as shiny and impressive as it does in its rendered images, then it could become a serious contender in the flying taxi market, which is projected to reach a market value of $6.63 billion by 2030.