XTI’s in-development TriFan 600 vertical take-off and landing (VTOL) aircraft is now not expected to enter production until 2027, with the program schedule having slipped by up to three years. The Colorado-based company’s new CEO, Michael Hinderberger, confirmed the delay during an August 3 press conference held by Xeriant Aerospace, with which it still aims to merge on the basis of a joint venture announced back in June 2021.
According to Hinderberger, who recently replaced Robert LaBelle as head of XTI, the company has completed a preliminary design review of the six-passenger TriFan 600. He reported that it now holds “qualified preorders” worth $3 billion, a figure that he said has increased by more than 50 percent over the past 12 months.
XTI views the TriFan 600 as an alternative to existing business aircraft and helicopters. The VTOL vehicle will seat six passengers in standard configuration, rising to nine for “taxi” operations. The design features three ducted fans, with two on the wing that tilt during the transition between hover and cruise flight, and a third position within the rear fuselage for vertical propulsion.
The projected range for the TriFan is 750 miles in VTOL mode, with the figure rising to around 850 miles when it takes off and lands conventionally on runways, a cruise speed of around 345 mph, and operations at up to 25,000 feet.
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