Joby gets FAA permit to fly first aircraft off production line


Joby Aviation has received an FAA Special Airworthiness Certificate for the first aircraft built on its pilot production line.

Issued by the Federal Aviation Administration, the certificate allows Joby to begin flight testing of its production prototype. Joby said it expects the aircraft to become the first ever eVTOL delivered to a customer when it moves to Edwards Air Force Base in 2024. There it will be operated by Joby as part of the firm’s Agility Prime contract with the US Air Force.

JoeBen Bevirt, founder and CEO of Joby, said the news marks a major step on the journey to scaled production. “We’re proud to have launched production in our home state of California. I’m incredibly grateful to the Joby team for their commitment to ensuring Joby remains the clear leader in this new sector and to Toyota for sharing their knowledge and experience with us over many years. Their support has been indispensable in helping us reach this point,” he said.

The OEM marked its production launch by welcoming the state governor of California, Gavin Newsom on Sunday and over 1,000 guests alongside the CEO of Toyota North America to its Marina facility in California today. 

Governor Newsom said: “California is proud to be home to some of the world’s most innovative companies. Joby is changing the game when it comes to the next frontier of flight: zero emission aviation. Our world-leading climate action relies on the technological advances and pioneering spirit of the private sector. Creating jobs and cutting pollution — that’s the California way.”

Toyota, Joby’s largest external shareholder, has invested around $400m in the OEM, and the two companies recently signed a long-term agreement for powertrain and actuation components. Tetsuo ‘Ted’ Ogawa, president and CEO, Toyota Motor North America, who will join Joby’s board next month, said: “We congratulate Joby on reaching this milestone and look forward to working ever more closely as Joby prepares to scale production and start operations.”