PRESS RELEASE – 07/09/2022


Contact information:

Adam Landau – Head of Communications

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EVfly pays deposits for three “Axe by Skyfly” eVTOLs

Fleet management and air mobility company EVfly has signed a Letter of Intent and will pay deposits for the “Axe by Skyfly” electric vertical takeoff and landing aircraft (eVTOL), with delivery expected in 2024.

EVfly intends to purchase three Axe aircraft, with an option for five more. EVfly intends to first start our operation in Thailand, followed by the rest of Asia, to demonstrate the potential utility of eVTOL aircraft, lay the groundwork for future commercial operations, and begin training the next generation of eVTOL pilots.

EVfly aims to provide an affordable, fast, and safe means of commercial transportation using a fleet of eVTOL (Electric Vertical Take-Off and Landing) and eCTOL (Electric Conventional Take-Off and Landing) aircraft, which will operate across Asia, Africa and the Middle East.

Although the Axe is mainly intended for use as a private aircraft, and has not been designed as a commercial air taxi, EVfly’s order demonstrates that the Axe is well-suited to the flight training market, thanks to its two-seat side-by-side cockpit configuration, its double set of wings, low purchase price and low operating costs and easy-to-master flight characteristics.

With non-rotating engines and high-lift canard wings which are unique to the eVTOL market, the Axe is capable of flying either like a helicopter or a conventional fixed-wing aircraft. This will make the Axe instantly familiar to existing fixed-wing or helicopter pilots transitioning to fly eVTOL aircraft, and make for better pilots than “wingless/rotor only” eVTOLs. As commercial eVTOL air taxis are likely to require trained pilots to operate them for at least the next decade, the Axe is best positioned to fill the incoming demand for eVTOL flight training – a market valued at £2.25 Billion up to 2028.

Skyfly CEO Michael Thompson said: “We are really excited to expand our footprint to cover the Asian markets and delighted that have Evfly has identified the Axe as the go-to training aircraft to satisfy the demand for the incoming demand for eVTOL pilots across Asia. 

“With our low purchase price, low running cost, 2-seat side by side design, and conventional fixed wing controls in forward flight, we expect to see more orders from other organisations looking for the ideal eVTOL trainer. EVfly have identified that eVTOLs will remain piloted for a number of years and there is not yet a suitable training aircraft on the market. We look forward to delivering our aircraft to EVfly in 2025.”

Yannick Erbs, a former commercial airline pilot and owner of cargo carrier Africa West, foudner of EvFly has said: “EVfly aim to be the first operator of eVTOLs in Thailand and want to take this opportunity to also become the first eVTOL pilot training hub in Southeast Asia. That is why we are happy to announce our collaboration with SkyFly and to trust their prototype “Axe by SkyFly” to ensure the smooth running of our training with a quality and safe aircraft.”



What is the Axe eVTOL?

With a fully-electric range of 100 miles, or 300 miles with an optional hybrid generator, and a cruise speed of 100mph, the Axe by Skyfly is a truly revolutionary two-seat eVTOL aircraft available for USD 180,000. It is designed for personal use and is as easy to fly as a consumer camera drone. Thanks to its small footprint and low noise, the Axe can be kept at home and flown directly to a destination, in complete comfort and with aerial views to enjoy, without traffic jams or bumpy roads.

Its unique four-winged design (patent pending), developed by renowned aeronautical engineer Dr William Brooks, enables the Axe not just to take off and land vertically like a helicopter, but also to fly, take off and land like a conventional airplane. This globally unique ability to also take off and land on a runway means Skyfly’s Axe is the only personal two-seat eVTOL aircraft that you can fly with any existing airplane pilot’s license. By providing lift, the wings also enable a much larger range compared to “rotors only” eVTOLs, an extra layer of safety due to its good glide performance, and a class-leading 30-50kw energy use in cruise, comparable to a Tesla but not requiring an eco-unfriendly road..

The Axe also offers greatly increased safety compared to a helicopter, thanks to its eight-motor distributed propulsion, each with its own power supply and its glide ability arising from its four wings, which enables power-off landing. Additionally, the Axe is fitted with a ballistic parachute – which a helicopter can never have due to the positioning of its rotors.

Skyfly does not aim to develop an air taxi that shuttles commercial passengers into city centres, nor is it venturing down the onerous commercial certification route, which leads to high development costs. Instead, Skyfly follows existing certification routes for private kit-built aircraft, which greatly reduces costs for the owner and enables the Axe to be sold at a base price of 180,000 USD. 

Unlike commercial air taxis, which require as-yet-unbuilt “vertiport” infrastructure, the Axe eVTOL can take off and land in a garden or any agricultural land where the landowner has given permission, without needing modifications or expensive infrastructure. This use is legal and well established, with many light aircraft owners operating in this way worldwide from private “farm strips”.

The Axe is not just an idea or concept, but a fully designed aircraft. Extensive analysis and prototype testing has been carried out and manufacturing is being readied for series production. Our two teams of aircraft engineers have developed the Axe as a versatile personal aircraft with strict focus on low weight and aerodynamic efficiency and performance. Aside from generating lift from its wings, the Axe also differs from other eVTOL designs in that it uses existing technology from proven and certified suppliers to provide key components, including the propulsion system, battery system and flight control system. Furthermore, unlike other winged eVTOLs, it has no rotating motor or wing elements, but instead has fixed angle rotors, saving on weight, cost, complexity and maintenance. For more information about how the Axe stands out from other eVTOLs, watch our full explainer video.

Skyfly’s Chief engineer, Dr William Brooks, has designed the Axe with efficiency at its core, with the four wings giving it the highest energy efficiency in comparison to other two-seat eVTOL aircraft. Compared to many other eVTOL designs, which have no or inadequate wings, the Axe’s wings generate useful lift in forward flight, improving efficiency, range and safety, while also giving it the ability to make conventional wing-borne take-offs and landings if required, saving yet more energy.

Skyfly sees the Axe as a direct competitor to currently-available two seat airplanes or helicopters – one that is much easier to fly, safer, quieter and more affordable to buy, operate and maintain. In addition, whichever bigger airtaxi eVTOL wins the race – these will require pilots, and the two seat, side by side Axe eVTOL is the ideal training vehicle – as the only eVTOL worldwide able to train pilots in fixed wing takeoffs and landings, and emergency glide landings, as well as vertical takeoffs and landings.

Following two years of development, CFD and CAD designing, followed by prototype flight testing, the Axe was officially launched in the summer of 2022. In the months since then, the Axe eVTOL by Skyfly has secured dozens of orders and has attracted the attention of air mobility specialist investors. Their backing allows Skyfly to push forward with its development schedule. The strong and lightweight composite fuselage tooling for series production has meanwhile been manufactured and delivered, and with that, Skyfly is now building its first aircraft, with manned test flights due to begin in Q1 2024. Customer deliveries will follow at the end of 2024, when UK certification is expected.

To find out more about the Axe visit 

To watch a video of our prototype flying, visit our YouTube channel.

The Axe EVTOL by Skyfly

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