Archer Aviation wants 'hundreds' of eVTOLs in the air by 2028 Olympics

Archer Aviation and Stellantis are well underway to ramp up their "Midnight" eVTOL air taxi production to fill the skies of the 2028 LA Olympics with "hundreds or thousands" of them.
Christopher McFadden
Archer’s "Midnight" aircraft in the front and "Maker" in the rear.

Archer Aviation 

Archer Aviation, Silicon-Valley-based electric vertical take-off and landing (eVTOL) vehicle developer, is allegedly moving "at full speed" to develop air taxis en masse with an eye to full-scale production by the 2030s. To this end, the company and its main investor Stellantis showcased their plans at this year's Paris air show by unveiling its "Midnight" four-seater air taxi.

Archer's Midnight air taxi reportedly has a range of up to 87 nautical miles (161 kilometers), but it is specifically optimized for flights between 17 and 43 nautical miles. The aircraft is engineered to reach up to 130 knots (241 kilometers per hour).

The factory will be ready by 2024

Adam Goldstein, Archer's CEO and co-founder, has a vision of a future where eVTOL aircraft are abundant and accessible, offering a mobility solution free from the limitations and challenges of ground-based transportation networks. He aims to have "hundreds or thousands" of eVTOL aircraft flying over the Los Angeles Olympic Games in 2028. According to Goldstein's statement on June 19th, they plan to transition from only a few test flights per day to thousands per month, indicating a high cadence of operations.

Stellantis has also increased its strategic shareholding by purchasing Archer stock in the open market. The world’s first high-volume eVTOL aircraft manufacturing facility is currently being constructed on an approximately 100-acre campus in Covington, Georgia. “The Stellantis and Archer teams are moving full speed ahead in execution mode to ensure we meet our goal of bringing scalable manufacturing of Archer’s aircraft online in mid-2024,” said Stellantis CEO Carlos Tavares.

“We believe this unique partnership is setting the standard for cross-industry collaboration and continues to be a key pillar of our strategy to ensure Stellantis leads the way the world moves, providing freedom of mobility in all ways. With our trusted teams onsite working shoulder-to-shoulder with Archer, I do not doubt we are on the right path,” he added.

“At Archer, our goal is not just to get to commercialization but to achieve it at scale. High-volume manufacturing is critical to ensuring we can meet this goal, and joining forces with one of the leading mobility companies in the world is helping us realize the once-in-a-generation opportunity we have to redefine urban transportation,” said Archer’s founder and CEO, Adam Goldstein. “I couldn’t be prouder of what we’ve already accomplished with this partnership as we continue to lead the industry in building manufacturing capabilities,” he added.

As Archer moves towards commercialization plans, the manufacturing ramp-up phase focuses on using both companies' strengths to scale aircraft production quickly. Experienced personnel from Stellantis are now allegedly working full-time with the Archer team to support operational readiness, focusing on manufacturing automation and component sourcing. Stellantis personnel are embedded across all areas of Archer's operations, including manufacturing, engineering, supply chain, quality, facilities, and human resources. The facility is set to go online in mid-2024.

They will build 650 air taxis annually

The company says its manufacturing operations can produce 650 aircraft annually, with the potential for expansion to support the production of up to 2,300 aircraft annually. Their goal is to become the world's top aircraft manufacturing facility in terms of volume. Both CEOs believe the necessary technology, public approval, and updated air traffic control infrastructure to integrate the aircraft into the National Airspace System successfully will be available by then.

“When we discussed with Adam and the Archer team, it was quite obvious that we share the same vision of the importance of protecting freedom of mobility - on the ground or in the air,” says Stellantis’ Tavares. “And the cherry on the cake is that it’s fun. That’s why this partnership is a blessing for us," he added.

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