During General Motors’ (GM) CES 2021 keynote, it showed off a new series of concept products under the Cadillac brand. The concept is made up of a passenger VTOL drone and an autonomous car to get you and your friends to and from locations and drones.
The VTOL drone doesn’t currently have a name but will be the first time Cadillac and GM explore the passenger drone market. The example used in the presentation is that you’ve been working at the office and need to make your way to a meeting quickly.
In GM’s vision, there is a Vertiport on the roof of your office building where a drone is waiting for you. You hop inside the drone, and it takes you to the Vertiport closest to the meeting location. From there, an autonomous vehicle meets you at the landing pad and takes you to the meeting.
This is all meant to happen seamlessly without any interaction need, other than booking the trip in. The method for this wasn’t mentioned in the video, but it will likely use an app similar to current ride-share companies.
From the video, it looks like the drone only has one seat for now, but GM’s global design chief Michael Simcoe shared that there are more concepts in the works, which includes a two-seater model more for recreational use than business.
The presentation mentioned that the VTOL drone uses a 90 kV motor to power the four rotors and is equipped with air-to-air and air-to-ground communications. As this is just a concept, changes will likely be made to the look and specs of the VTOL, so take these with a grain of salt.
While these are just concepts and will likely not represent the finished product, they are still great to see. Seeing electric autonomous cars and drones from a company as large as GM is an important step to helping the world move into an electric and driverless future.