Aska gets FAA clearance, begins flight tests
Aska has announced its flying car, dubbed Aska A5, has received clearance from the FAA and begun flight testing.
The Silicon Valley-based firm’s prototype has been issued a certificate of authorisation (COA) and special airworthiness certification by the FAA. Since 2022, Aska has performed successful ground testing and earlier this year began on-street driving tests. The OEM is also working closely with the US regulator on type certification, it said.
Guy Kaplinsky, CEO and co-founder, said: “We have achieved a series of technological milestones in the first quarter of 2023; debuting the first full-scale working prototype of the Aska A5 in January at CES, successfully performing field and driving tests, and obtaining the COA and Special Airworthiness Certification for our pre-production prototype. The data we are harvesting from flight testing is enabling us to make progress towards our type certification. We already completed the initial phase and are progressing towards our next milestone, G1 status.”
G-1 basis, like that which Lilium announced it had received earlier this week, is a recognised as a milestone in the FAA cross-validation process. It establishes the airworthiness and environmental requirements necessary to achieve FAA type certification validation.
Maki Kaplinsky, co-founder and chief operating officer, said: “The airworthiness certification validates our efforts to develop a drive and fly eVTOL with an emphasis on safety. One of the significant advantages of a roadworthy eVTOL, like the Aska A5, is that it does not require the modification or electrification of existing airports since it can maximise the use of today’s infrastructure, such as the many charging stations located around us. We are working with local airports in the Bay Area to test and confirm our concept of operations — they open the gate, Aska A5 drives in as a car, drives/taxis to the helipad or runway, transforms into the flight mode and can take off.”
With pre-order reservations launched in 2021, the company said it has secured $50M in pre-orders to date.