A European air taxi operator has put a deposit down on future orders of Bye Aerospace’s eFlyer 800 to serve its short-hop scheduled service and on-demand flights. The King Air-sized twin is still on the drawing board and the FAA is still developing the regulatory structure for certification of electric aircraft, but both companies see a major role for this kind of aircraft in short-haul operations. “Air2E’s mission is to accelerate the transition to sustainable aviation and now with the eFlyer 800 we are another step closer to this aim.” Air2E CEO Norbert Werle said in a news release. “We intend to build an eFlyer 800 fleet for our AirTaxi service, which is already today the most economical individual flight solutions available.
The eFlyer 800 program was announced earlier this year and predicts a 320-knot maximum cruise speed, 35,000-foot ceiling and a 500 nautical mile range with IFR reserves at its normal cruise of about 280 knots. It will seat seven passengers and one or two pilots. Bye is claiming operating costs of 20 percent those of comparably sized turboprops.