Brazilian firm plans to build electric flying taxis

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Brazilian firm plans to build electric flying taxis

The Brazilian plane maker Embraer says a new factory will be built near Sao Paolo to produce electric flying taxis which it hopes will take to the skies from 2026.

The aircraft, to be made by its subsidiary Eve, will resemble a small helicopter with enough space for up to six customers.

It is envisaged a trip will cost $50-$100 (£39-£78) per person.

Eve says it already has orders for almost 3,000 air taxis.

It hopes to assemble a prototype this year. US regulators recently released a timeline for air taxis to be flying there as early as 2025.

The electric vertical take-off and landing aircraft will not need a runway but can travel long distances like an aeroplane. Electric motors should reduce noise and pollution compared with standard planes.

It has been argued the aircraft could help reduce traffic congestion in crowded cities, without being too expensive for customers. They have also been seen as an alternative for transporting cargo.

The factory will be built in the city of Taubate about 140km (87 miles) from Sao Paulo, Brazil’s economic capital.

The drone-like passenger vehicles will initially be used in taxi fleets, AFP news agency reported.

The first flights will have a pilot but a later rollout of self-piloted vehicles is also in the company’s plans.

The vehicles will be 100% electric, allowing for emission-free flights.