ASKA 3.0 (Production Design Model)
New Future Transportation, Inc. (NFT, Inc.)
Los Altos, California, USA
Founded in 2018, New Future Transportation, Inc. (NFT) is developing a hybrid-electric vertical takeoff and landing (VTOL) vehicle that will work both as an aircraft and ground car, i.e., a drive-fly vehicle. Los Altos (California, USA) is the location of NFT’s research and development center, its Center of Excellence is based in Israel and its quality assurance and manufacturing center will be located in Japan. NFT opened opened a modern showroom in Los Altos on April 15, 2021.
The company's foresees door to door air transportation using the same vehicle with the ability to drive on existing roads and fly in the air, as the best method for emerging Urban Air Mobility (UAM) industry. A big advantage for this vehicle is there need to travel to airports and no on-demand ground taxi service is needed to be purchased. The entire trip is in one vehicle. The company will eventually transition the aircraft to be an all electric aircraft, when batteries technology has enough energy density to fly long distances and are completely safe to use for air travel.
The ASKA 3.0 Production Design hybrid-electric VTOL aircraft holds four passengers, flying autonomously or semi-autonomously, has a maximum cruise speed of 150 mph (941 km/h) and has a range of 200 m (322 km) allowing faster travel within large metropolitan cities, to suburban areas and to rural areas and back. The aircraft also has the advantage of taking off and land like a conventional airplane or takeoff and land like a helicopter.
The aircraft has four propellers on retractable booms for VTOL flight and a retractable tilt high-wing with two propellers used for both VTOL and forward flight. Wide and high windows provide excellent visibility for the passengers, the aircraft has a small V-tail and the quad fixed wheels are used for both landing gear and ground travel. The VTOL booms and wings fold back for ground travel and extend for flight.
NFT, Inc. expects to fly their full scale prototype in 2022 with FAA certification by 2025. The company is now pre-selling the vehicle for a total of $789,000.00 USD with a $5,000.00 deposit (the price which includes pilot training) according to several April 2021 articles. In addition, the company sees the price come down as more production models are sold over time. The first deliveries are expected to be in 2026.
- Aircraft type: Hybrid-electric VTOL and ground vehicle
- Piloting: Autonomous and semi-autonomous control
- Capacity: 4 passengers
- Maximum cruise speed: 150 mph (941 km/h)
- Range: 200 m (322 km)
- Propellers: 6 propellers
- Electric Motors: 6 electric motors for the propellers (possibly one electric motor for the ground vehicle)
- Power source: Hybrid-electric gas engine
- Batteries: Backup batteries if gas engine fails
- Fuselage: Carbon fiber composite
- Dimensions: 20 feet long X 40 feet wide
- Windows: Panoramic windows with a wrap around window design allowing forward, left, right
- Wings: High wing
- Landing gear: Four fixed landing wheels
- Safety Features: Distributed Electric Propulsion (DEP), provides safety through redundancy for its passengers and/or cargo. DEP means having multiple propellers and motors on the aircraft so if one or more motors or propellers fail, the other working motors and propellers can safely land the aircraft.
- Article: Forget Air Taxis: This Flying SUV Wants to Be a Private Commuter for the Whole Family, Robb Report, Apr. 15, 2021
- Article: NFT Inc. reimagines urban and rural living with flying car ASKA, TechCrunch, Apr. 15, 2021
- Article: Flying-car buyers can put down $5,000 now for an Aska in 2026, CNET, Apr. 15, 2021
- Video: ASKA™ Launch Special Event, ASKA by NFT eVTOL drive & fly vehicle, Apr. 14, 2021
- Video: ASKA™ Drive&Fly eVTOL, ASKA by NFT eVTOL drive & fly vehicle, Apr. 15, 2021