Lift Aircraft reports progress on Hexa flight tests

Jeff Bezos in Lift Aircraft's Hexa
Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos tries out the seat in Lift Aircraft’s Hexa ultralight during Amazon’s MARS conference in March. (Lift Aircraft Photo)

It’s been nine months since Lift Aircraft announced its plan to field an 18-rotor, electric-powered copter for fun flights, and nearly six months since the company’s Hexa aircraft shared a photo op with Jeff Bezos at Amazon’s MARS conference — but Lift’s CEO says the Hexa project is still on track to take on its first customers by the end of this year.

Matt Chasen, a veteran of the startup world and a former Boeing engineer, says his company is planning to offer the first round of trial flights in its headquarters city of Austin, Texas.

The original idea was to take the Hexa, which will be classified as a powered ultralight aircraft by the Federal Aviation Administration, on a 25-city tour.

“Securing great places to fly in each city is not super easy but we’re planning to go to LA, SF and SD [Los Angeles, San Francisco and San Diego] in the first few months of next year, and will likely time our tour through Seattle for summer,” Chasen said in an email.

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By Alan Boyle

Mastermind of Cosmic Log, contributor to GeekWire and Universe Today, author of "The Case for Pluto: How a Little Planet Made a Big Difference," past president of the Council for the Advancement of Science Writing.

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