Xpeng’s X2 flying car showcases in Beijing

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On June 16th, Xpeng AeroHT showcased its X2 “flying car” at the 2024 China Langfang International Economic and Trade Fair. The demonstration took place at the Beijing International Airport Economic Zone. While not its first public test flight, this occasion marked the first flight of a flying car in the Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei region, highlighting the area’s target of developing “the low-altitude economy.”

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In May, the Beijing City Government issued a draft action plan titled “Beijing Promotes the High-Quality Development of the Low-Altitude Economy Industry (2024-2027).” This plan aims to establish Beijing as a hub for innovation in the low-altitude economy. It explores new business models for flying cars, including intercity commuting and inner-city shuttle services. Just a few months ago, Xpeng CEO He Xiao Peng was in Beijing pitching his vision for flying vehicles to the National Congress.

Xpeng AeroHT, initially founded as Heitech in 2013 by Zhao Deli with financial support from Xpeng CEO He Xiaopeng, has made significant strides in the flying car industry. The company rebranded to AeroHT and debuted its first-generation flying car in 2016. By 2020, the company had launched its fifth-generation flying car, and in 2021, AeroHT completed its Series A financing round, raising over $500 million USD.

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The Xpeng X2, known as Voyager 2 when originally launched, is more of a drone-type vehicle than a car. It features a two-seater design constructed mainly from carbon materials. The X2 measures 5172 mm in length, 5124 mm in width, and 1362 mm in height, with a curb weight of 680 kg and a maximum payload of 160 kg. Unlike most consumer drones with four motors, the X2 is an octocopter, providing extra thrust and redundancy. In case of motor failure, a built-in parachute ensures safety.

With a flight endurance of 25 minutes, the X2 has undergone nearly 4,000 test flights and has been tested in various scenarios, including urban areas, sea regions, and deserts. AeroHT plans to offer an extended-range option for the mass-produced version, presumably with a larger battery, to hit the market in the next few years. However, Xpeng will first produce the Land Carrier, which consists of a drone-type car and transport vehicle, in 2025. Spy shots of the Land Carrier emerged in March this year.

This demonstration in Beijing signifies another milestone in the development of flying car technology in China, as the Xpeng X2 continues to push forward for a future of urban and intercity transportation in the air.

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Editors Note:

While it’s exciting to see the X2 being tested in Beijing, where many people can watch, it’s a bit odd that we aren’t seeing the Land Carrier model being tested first and more often since it is slated to start mass production next year.

That being said, the more testing we see, especially in more visible places like Beijing, the more likely we are to clear the regulatory hurdles, which are going to be one of the main challenges in getting “flying cars” off the ground for the general population’s usage.

Source: CN News

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