Airline entrepreneur Ed Wegel has revealed plans to launch electric air taxi operations in Florida under new brand UrbanLink, only days after he announced new Airbus A220 operator Air Flo. 

Wegel, the recently-departed chief executive of Global Crossing Airlines, said on March 19 that Air Flo’s holding company will seek to launch electric air taxi operations under a separate Part 135 operating certificate with the Federal Aviation Administration.

The company “has our sights set on” electric vertical take-off and landing (eVTOL) aircraft being developed by the USA’s Eve Air Mobility and Germany’s Lilium, Wegel says. He did not disclose how many electric aircraft UrbanLink is interested in eventually flying, nor specify cities targeted for passenger flights.

FlightSafety is working with Lilium and others on a regulatory framework for the burgeoning UAM sector

Source:  Lilium 

Air taxi brand UrbanLink is eyeing Lilium’s proposed jet for regional operations in Florida 

Lilium’s jet would be used for longer-range regional flights, Wegel says, while Eve’s eVTOL would be targeted at shorter hauls. 

“This will allow us to move passengers efficiently between focus cities in the state, and also provide transportation for local passengers,” he says. ”There is a need for further research on battery weight and focus on FAA certification, but this technology is coming and will continue to be improved over time.” 

Wegel’s latest plans to enter the eVTOL space are strikingly to similar to those of Global Crossing – operating as GlobalX – another Florida-based narrowbody operator of which Wegel was the founding CEO. 

Global Crossing launched in November a subsidiary called UrbanX that plans to operate electric aircraft in South Florida and the Caribbean, and holds conditional orders for 200 of Eve’s air taxis and 50 of Eviation’s all-electric Alice commuters. 

However, Global Crossing president Ryan Goepel seemed less enthusiastic about potential eVTOL operations in Florida when asked about plans for Eve’s aircraft during the company’s 6 March earnings call. 

“The company is focusing on projects and initiatives that will generate profit today,” Goepel said. “That is a longer-term play. As of right now, the focus of the management team is 100% on near-term profitability and narrowbody charters, which is our core business.” 

Wegel resigned as CEO of Global Crossing in early February, and recently revealed plans to start Air Flo. 

”We have a line of sight on our first two A220s for delivery in 2025, and we have initial agreements on airline alliances that will provide us with connectivity and revenue,” he says. ”We continue to be impressed with the Airbus 220’s capabilities – it is best in class with 33% lower operating costs than the 737 and A320.” 

Response to Air Flo’s initial 119 open positions, to be based out of Florida, has been “overwhelming”, Wegel says. 

Aviation finance firm Avi8 Air Capital – a company which Wegel founded and leads – has developed Air Flo’s plan.

Eve over Miami

Source: Embraer

South Florida-based Eve has long envisioned passenger-carrying air taxi operations in cities such as Miami