RotorX has just opened sales of its one-seat Dragons to wannabe “Star Wars” speeder pilots willing to build their own mini-eVTOLs. The Arizona company says it will begin delivering the flying Dragons next August.
The Dragon will have an eight-prop coaxial layout—think octocopter—with 16-kW electric motors, powered by lithium batteries, for each prop. The multi-engine configuration is designed for redundancy in case of a single engine failure. It will be piloted by joystick, but also comes with a “sensor-drive auto-landing system” for safety. The cool auto-hover feature is ideal for flying over your friends, hovering to gloat.
The Dragon is similar to the Jetson One, which is being built in Italy on a similar timeline. Jetson plans to start shipping its first units next year.
Both electric aircraft have similar max flight times of about 20 minutes. The Dragon will have a top speed of 60 mph and maximum pilot weight of 200 to 250 lbs. Both personal eVTOLs will have ballistic parachutes for safety and other failsafes, though flying 12 feet off the ground—rather than 100 feet above it—might be the safest way to pilot the aircraft.
Because it’s classified under the FAA’s ultralight category, the Dragon doesn’t require a pilot’s license to operate. Regulations for that class of aircraft do mandate no flights near airports or crowded areas. It’ll be built in kit form, a RotorX rep told Robb Report, though assembly could happen at its company’s Arizona headquarters with assistance from its technicians. RotorX will also provide flight training for clients.
While this new mini-eVTOL class doesn’t have an official name, it’s becoming a thing. Besides the Jetson One and the Dragon, other personal eVTOLs like the Ryse Recon and two-person Air One are coming online in the next two years.
The company says the first 100 Dragons for “pre-order” will be priced at $85,000, compared to the list price of $99,000.