Kitty Hawk, the electric air taxi startup backed by Google co-founder Larry Page, announced Wednesday that it plans to “wind down” operations.
“We’ve decided to end Kittyhawk. We’re still working out the details of what’s next,” the company wrote in a brief. Joint statement on this LinkedIn And Twitter Page Kitty Hawk did not immediately respond to a request for further comment.
According to its website, Kitty Hawk had a lofty mission to “build autonomous, affordable, ubiquitous and environmentally friendly air taxis.” It was founded by Sebastian Thron, a former Google executive who led the company’s self-driving car efforts.
The startup operated in secret until 2017, when it publicly unveiled its first aircraft — an ultralight electric plane dubbed the Blower which was designed to fly over water. Page, was said to be one of the richest men in the world. 100 million dollars invested. Flying car startups including Kitty Hawk.
After more than 25,000 successful test flights, the Flyer was finally retired in 2020, according to the company. Allegedly laid off many of those who were working on the flyer at the time. The company launched other electric airplane prototypes and announced a partnership with Boeing in 2019.
Kittyhawk’s shutdown will not affect its joint venture with Boeing, dubbed Wisk. In a ___ TweetWisk said it is “in a strong financial position” with both Boeing and Kitty Hawk as investors.
Like the Kittyhawk, Wisk is developing an “all-electric, self-flying air taxi” that it says “takes off like a helicopter and flies like an airplane,” according to its website. According to the company it will “remove the need for an airplane runway and allow you to land where you need to be”.