Shinjuku-ku, Tokyo, Japan
Founded in July 2018, SkyDrive is and eVTOL company based in Tokyo, Japan. Tomohiro Fukuzawa is the chief executive officer and Nobuo Kishi is the chief technology officer. (All photos SkyDrive credit.) The idea of making a flying car first started in September 2012 with the start-up company Cartivator which was comprised of volunteer automotive and aviation industry volunteers. In January 2014, Cartivator started developing electric vertical takeoff and landing (eVTOL) aircraft with over 100 designs.
The reasons the company wanted to develop eVTOL Urban Air Mobility (UAM) aircraft is to make an aircraft that costs less to manufacturer, increase safety, reduce noise of the aircraft, have autonomous piloting and using less infrastructure for UAM. The plan is to start using the aircraft in the mid-2020s for air transportation of goods and people in rural and urban areas.
The SkyDrive SD-02 is an eVTOL one person demonstrator that has an open cockpit with a roll bar and is flown using eight propellers and eight electric motors powered by batteries. The company started flight tests in December 2019 through the spring of 2020. These flight test were the first crewed "flying car" tests in Japan. The flights focused on testing flight maneuverability, flight stability and to determine if any additional improvements needed to be made to the aircraft. The SD-02 cruise speed, cruise altitude, range and flight time are unknown.
The basic design of the SD-02 was transferred to the SD-03 one passenger eVTOL aircraft. The purpose of the SD-03 prototype is the get approval for an airworthiness certificate.
- Aircraft type: eVTOL demonstrator
- Piloting: 1 Pilot
- Cruise speed: Unknown
- Maximum flight time: Unknown
- Propellers: 8 propellers
- Electric Motors: 8 motors
- Power source: Batteries
- Dimensions: 3.66 meters (12 feet) L X 3.66 meters (12 feet) W X 1.5 meters H (5 feet)
- Windows: Open cockpit
- Landing gear: Fixed skid type landing gear.
- 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. One roll bar for pilot safety.
- SkyDrive website
- SkyDrive Facebook
- SkyDrive Twitter
- SkyDrive YouTube
- SkyDrive LinkedIn
- PDF: Fact Book, SkyDrive, Aug. 2020
- Video: SkyDrive Members 2019, SkyDrive, Sept. 16, 2019
- Article: SkyDrive secures new financing for flying car development, eVTOL, Oct. 1, 2019
- Article: SkyDrive Launches Japan’s First Test Flight of Manned “Flying Car”, SkyDrive, Jan. 6, 2020
- Article: “World’s Smallest Flying Car” From SkyDrive Has Started Manned Testing in Japan, Auto Evolution, Jan. 23, 2020
- Video: Future World with SkyDrive 2030, SkyDrive, Mar. 5, 2020
- Article: SkyDrive confirms manned flight tests, appoints Nobuo Kishi as CTO, eVTOL, Apr. 4, 2020
- Article: Tomohiro Fukuzawa: SkyDrive’s product is a flying car, Weekly Economist, Apr. 6. 2020
- Article: SkyDrive conducts manned flights and moves forward with NoBuo Kishi at the helm, SkyDrive, Apr. 7, 2020
- Article: SkyDrive claims Japan’s first manned multirotor flight, New Atlas, Apr. 14, 2020
- Article: Japan’s SkyDrive advances ‘compact air mobility’, eVTOL, Apr. 15, 2020
- Article: Japan’s first-ever manned test flights of a flying car completed by SkyDrive, Inceptive Mind, Apr. 15, 2020
- Article: Former Toyotamen are taking on the challenge of the “Flying car dream”, President Online, Apr. 17, 2020
- Article: SkyDrive Completes First Manned Flying Car Test In Japan, CleanTechnica, Apr. 20, 2020
- Article: SkyDrive Appoints Kishi as CTO, eVTOL News, Apr. 30, 2020
- Article: SkyDrive Completes Japan’s First Manned eVTOL Test Flights, eVTOL News, May 3, 2020