Will electric helicopters for short-haul transport be the future of mobility? It may be too early to say, but given the growing number of start-ups involved in this technology and the funding from automotive giants, it's safe to assume that one day we may be getting around this way. 

The latest example is the purchase by Stellantis of 8.3 million shares in Archer Aviaton, a US start-up that is building a vertical take-off and landing electric vehicle. 

A great deal of trust

The relationship between the group headed by Carlos Tavares and the Californian start-up has been going on for years. The collaboration began in 2020 (with FCA), while the first investment dates back to 2021. In 2023, Stellantis expressed its intention to produce exclusively Midnight, Archer's first vehicle. The project calls for the construction of a production plant in Georgia (USA), scheduled for completion by the end of 2024. Assembly of the eVTOL (electric vehicle with vertical take-off and landing) should begin in 2025, at a regular rate of 650 units per year.

<p>Archer Midnight</p>

Archer Midnight

The Midnight specification calls for an 8-propeller vehicle with a carrying capacity of 454 kg, i.e. 4 passengers and a pilot, a range of 100 miles and the possibility of making round trips between 20 and 50 miles, recharging its batteries in 10 minutes. 

Stellantis is not the only giant to invest in Archer. The Abu Dhabi Investment Office has also decided to believe in the Californian start-up, with the idea of putting the first eVTOLs into service in the Arab country from 2026.

Gallery: Archer Midnight eVTOL x Stellantis