“Flying car” company to enter US market in partnership with Columbia Metropolitan Airport (CAE)

Japanese company SkyDrive says its SD-05 is the future of transportation.

Skydrive CAE colatoday

The SD-05 commercial aircraft is currently in development.

Rendering by SkyDrive

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Are flying cars finally here? Imagine being able to bypass Malfunction Junction while riding in an air taxi. Feels like the future, doesn’t it? Well, that future isn’t too far off.

Meet SkyDrive Inc. — a Japanese eVTOL companyentering the US market in SC in partnership with several airports, including Columbia Metropolitan Airport (CAE).

skydrive colatoday

The current model can travel ~5-10km.

Rendering by SkyDrive

What the heck is eVTOL?

eVTOL stands for electric vertical take-off and landing. It’s an aircraft that does, well, just that. It uses electric power to take off and land vertically. SkyDrive’s model — the SD-05 — is a zero-emissions, two-seat aircraft designed for use in daily life.

What happens now?

SkyDrive will build a business infrastructure in SC and work with the Columbia Metropolitan Airport (CAE) and Greenville Downtown Airport (hey, GVLtoday 👋) to establish FAA-approved operations for the SD-05 to hit SC skies safely and efficiently.

Why our state?

SkyDrive’s founder and CEO Tomohiro Fukuzawa said in its press release that choosing the Palmetto State was easy because SC “has a proven ability to excel in advanced aerospace manufacturing.

Other factors considered:

When will it take flight?

SkyDrive aims to begin its air taxi service in 2025 in Osaka, Japan with hopes to make driving in the sky accessible to everyone by 2050.

Frank Murray — the Director of Planning & Facilities at Columbia Metropolitan Airport (CAE) — told COLAtoday,

“We are going to work with Skydrive to identify the potential uses for this technology in the US market through simulations based on our regional infrastructure and demographics. We believe educational and business opportunities will spin off from the knowledge we will gain through this exercise.“

Greenville Downtown Airport Director James Stephens said a lot has to happen before this concept becomes reality, including:

  • FAA regulations and approval
  • Funding and construction of landing infrastructure
  • Consumer acceptance of a new transportation method

Watch SkyDrive’s full announcement below.