It is a single-seat, self-driving quadcopter called the Ehang 184.It looks like an oversized drone with a cockpit stuffed in the middle, a flying analog to the 1,000-horsepower autonomous concept beast that Faraday Future unveiled on Monday night.Test flights have already been conducted in Dubai, and the taxi service is expected to launch in July, says Al Tayer.
Realistically, you will probably never ride in a 184, nor will anyone you know.
The launch video that Ehang gave the press tells kind of a sappy founder story about aeronautical safety, aging transportation infrastructure and environmental conservation.
There are all kinds of government clearances that it will have to obtain before you can fly by drone to work.
But Ehang says it is working closely with government agencies on the technology.
The 184 provides a viable solution to the many challenges the transportation industry faces in a safe and energy efficient way,' said EHang CEO Huazhi Hu.
'If you roll the timeline back to 100 years you will see that when we went from horse and carriage to vehicles people had the same concerns of whether you could trust it to take you from A to B,' said Yan.
Not that engineers had any doubts about the safety of the Volocopter’s recent first-ever manned flight, which the company’s boss bravely piloted.
The extraordinary drone-helicopter hybrid is essentially a two-seat flying machine that gets off the ground with the help of what looks like a large number of drones that’ve been welded together.
Chinese drone-maker Ehang has developed the 184, a prototype of the first autonomous drone that will fly humans.
The helicopter-like flying machine seats one, and after the flier enters the destination, it will require just two button presses from the rider: take off and land. The 184 (one passenger, eight propellers, four arms), isn't ready to fly just yet.
It also looks like the 184 was digitally stitched into some of the filming sequences, and it wasn’t clear from the press demo or the materials handed out whether people have really taken this thing for a spin.