GM revealed Tuesday a Cadillac-branded electric vertical takeoff and landing drone concept that is designed — if it’s ever built — to let owners cruise the skies in isolated luxury.
The single-seat eVTOL, which was showcased alongside an autonomous vehicle during GM’s keynote presentation at the virtual 2021 CES tech trade show, is the automaker’s first foray into aerial mobility. This is a mere concept, which means it’s unlikely to become a real product. However, these concepts can signal where a company is headed on the design or product front. And when it comes to electric and autonomous vehicles, GM has proven its willingness to invest in the technologies.
“We are preparing for a world where advances in electric and autonomous technology make personal air travel possible,” Michael Simcoe, GM’s global design chief, said during the presentation. “It is a concept designed for the moment when time is of essence and convenience is everything.”
The eVTOL concept is equipped with a 90-kilowatt hour electric motor to power four rotors that can whisk the passenger off of a rooftop to their destination. It also comes with air-to-air and air-to-ground communications capabilities.
Simcoe said the company has more concepts planned, including a “luxurious two-seater designed for you and someone very special to decompress, relax and enjoy a multi sensory experience choreographed for more intimate journeys.”
The entire exercise, as Simcoe explained, is to show the world what autonomy and Cadillac luxury might look like in the “not too distant future.”
Of course, these concepts are also designed to convey just how serious GM is about the future of transportation, which in its view centers around electrification, automated vehicle technology and connected car services.