We might soon be seeing flying Toyotas in the not so distant future. This comes after the Japanese automaker partnered up with Joby Aviation, an aerospace company that is developing and commercializing an all-electric vertical take-off and landing (eVTOL) aircraft.
With Toyota looking at the long-term potential of the urban air mobility market to meet the evolving needs of soceity, the automaker looked to Joby Aviation as they see them as an industry leader in making fast, quiet, safe, and affordable air travel to everyone.
To make this possible, Toyota invested $394 million into the aerospace company. With Joby Aviation's Series C eVTOL project costing about $590 million, Toyota has become the lead investor for the upcoming aircraft. In addition to Toyota's investment, the automaker will share its expertise in manufacturing, quality, and cost controls for the development and production of the breakthrough of the eVTOL aircraft.
“Air transportation has been a long-term goal for Toyota, and while we continue our work in the automobile business, this agreement sets our sights to the sky. As we take up the challenge of air transportation together with Joby, an innovator in the emerging eVTOL space, we tap the potential to revolutionize future transportation and life. Through this new and exciting endeavor, we hope to deliver freedom of movement and enjoyment to customers everywhere, on land, and now, in the sky,” said Akio Toyoda, CEO and president of Toyota Motor Corporation.
As for JoeBen Bevirt, founder and CEO of Joby Aviation, he said that this collaboration with Toyota shows the unprecedented commitment of money and resources from one of the world's leading automakers. “Toyota is known globally for the quality and reliability of their products driven by meticulous attention to detail and manufacturing processes. I am excited to harness Toyota's engineering and manufacturing prowess to drive us toward our dream of helping a billion people save an hour+ commuting time every day,” added Bevirt.
With both Toyota and Joby Aviation anticipating air mobility service to boom in the near future, the eVTOL aircraft is expected to help bring on-demand air transportation into the mainstream and allow a new category of moving people and goods.