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Uber's Flying Taxis Could Be Coming to Australia

The ridesharing service's Elevate project could be trialled in Sydney and Melbourne as soon as 2023.
By Libby Curran
August 16, 2017
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Uber's Flying Taxis Could Be Coming to Australia

The ridesharing service's Elevate project could be trialled in Sydney and Melbourne as soon as 2023.
By Libby Curran
August 16, 2017
  shares

Has that hectic peak hour traffic got you dreaming about a more carefree commute? Well, if Uber's ambitions are realised, flying vehicles could be cruising the skies of Sydney and Melbourne as early as 2023.

In October last year, the ridesharing company unveiled plans for its Elevate project, which would see it develop a network of on-demand, electric aircraft that could take off and land vertically, ideal for congested city zones.

And while there are plenty of others pushing the concept of flying vehicles internationally, (like Kitty Hawk's futuristic vehicle prototype and Airbus' driverless flying taxis) it looks like Uber's plans might involve Australia in a significant way.

Talking to the Australian Financial Review, Uber's chief product officer Jeff Holden has revealed that, after launching the Elevate cars in Dallas and Dubai in 2020, the company's sights are set further afield — and our two largest cities, Melbourne and Sydney, could be enjoying a slice of the action in a secondary 2023 roll-out. According to Holden, Sydney's nightmarish congestion issues mean the city is prime turf for the company's urban air transport trials. Anything to avoid getting stuck in the Harbour Tunnel at 5.45pm.

Word is, Uber's multi-passenger flying cars will look and act a bit like helicopters, but use multiple propellers and rechargeable batteries. The company would also develop a series of rooftop 'vertiports' across each city, where aircraft will take off, land, and recharge.

Apparently a daily flight to the office won't even send you broke, with Elevate fares expected to hover around the same price as your average UberX trip, once the project's fully established. Looks like we might be using The Fifth Element-style taxis way before 2263.

Via Australian Financial Review and news.com.au.

Published on August 16, 2017 by Libby Curran

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