News ID: 187653
Published: 0608 GMT February 14, 2017

Dubai aims to launch hover-taxi by July

Dubai aims to launch hover-taxi by July

Dubai has tested a Chinese prototype of a self-driving hover-taxi, its transport authority said, with the aim of introducing the aerial vehicle in the emirate by July.

The test of the one-man electric vehicle comes as the city state in the United Arab Emirates seeks to ensure a quarter of its means of transport are self-driving by 2030, according to

The EHang 184 can travel on a programmed course at 100 kilometers an hour (60mph) at an altitude of 300 meters (1,000 feet), the authority said.

A passenger simply needs to select a destination for the autonomous taxi to take off, fly the route and touch down in the chosen spot monitored by a ground control center, it said.

The vehicle, made by Chinese drone manufacturer EHang, can recharge in two hours and make trips of up to 30 minutes.

The authority head Mattar al-Tayer said, "The autonomous aerial vehicle exhibited at the World Government Summit is not just a model.

"We have already experimented (with) the vehicle in a flight in (the) Dubai sky.

"The authority was making every effort to start the operation of the autonomous aerial vehicle in July 2017 to help reduce traffic congestion.

"The quadcopter is powered by eight propellers."

It has highly accurate sensors and can resist extreme temperatures. The emirate is known for its scorching summers.

In November, Dubai agreed a deal with US startup Hyperloop One to study the construction of a near-supersonic transport link to the Emirati capital Abu Dhabi.

Home to Burj Khalifa, the world's tallest tower, Dubai is a leading tourist destination in the Persian Gulf, attracting a record 14.9 million visitors in 2016.


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