Tetra Aviation’s New Electric Aircraft

Skip the traffic in this one-person eVTOL.

By Rachel Cormack 04/08/2021

Tetra Aviation’s new electric aircraft is all about numero uno. The exclusive, single-seat eVTOL, dubbed the Mk-5, will allow just one traveller to fly up to 160 kilometres safely, silently and sans any emissions.

The aircraft, which has been roughly three and a half years in the making, was recently unveiled at the week-long EAA AirVenture event at the Wittman Regional Airport in Wisconsin. The futuristic design looks kind of like a pod racer from a sci-fi flick and has the innovative tech to match.

Forged from aluminium and carbon-fibre-reinforced polymers (CFRP), the Mk-5 measures roughly 28 feet wide by 20 feet long by 7 feet high and weighs just over 1,000 pounds when empty. It’s equipped with some 32 vertical rotors on four fixed-wing planes along with one horizontal thrust at the rear to help it soar through the skies.

The eVTOL’s cockpit accommodates just one individual. Tetra Aviation

As for power, the Mk-5 packs a 13.5 kWh battery for clean cruising. The Japanese startup says this gives the plane a top speed of 100 mph (160 km/h) and a range of 100 miles. That’ll get you from New York City to the Hamptons, no worries.

The cockpit accommodates just one person, who helms the aircraft via a joystick and semiautomatic fly-by-wire electrical controls. The idea being that the Mk-5 will be straightforward enough for both novices and professionals alike to pilot.

Arguably, the biggest draw is the fact that the aircraft is easy to manufacture. That means it’s also easier to scale from prototype to mass production. In fact, Tetra Aviation plans to start delivering the Mk-5 as a kit plane as early as 2022.

Tetra Aviation Mk-5

The Mk-5 has a range of 160 kilometres and can reach speeds of up to 160km/h Tetra Aviation

Before all of that, however, the team will carry out multiple test flights to ensure the Mk-5 runs smoothly and safely. The company will also need to seek all the requisite regulatory approval should it wish to operate its aircraft in the US.

If you like what you see, though, the Mk-5 is already available for pre-order. Your long-weekend getaway could soon get a lot more fun.

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