Toyota is throwing another major round of funding behind a hot new startup, Joby Aviation, which is looking to popularize a line of electric air taxis.
This will be the second round of funding from Toyota for Joby Aviation, and will nearly triple the previous investment from the auto giant to $394 million.
In all Joby has raised $720 million in the nearly 10 years it’s been active.
Toyota will now collaborate with the startup to build its fleet of vertical takeoff and landing (VTOL) craft which are designed to be used in a ride-hailing service.
With the help of Toyota, Joby hopes to bring its vehicles to market faster. To do so, it has also partnered with ride-sharing startup, Uber.
In its partnership with Uber, Joby is aiming to let users of the service to hail one of its vehicles on-demand. Uber will provide the company a network of customers and also help with the construction of landing pads, production, and more.
The company, despite the recent votes of confidence from Toyota and Uber, will have staunch competition from other companies looking to bring their own contributions to air taxis to fruition.
In addition to Hyundai, Bell also unveiled the Nexus 4EX air taxi, at CES in Las Vegas this month.
This is the firm’s second version of the fully electric flying vehicle, which now boasts a larger wing than its predecessor that made an appearance at the Las Vegas event in 2019.
The redesigned craft can carry up to five passengers for 60 miles at a speed of around 150 miles per hour and could take off in the next five years.
Bell is aso part of Uber Elevate, which is the ride-hailing giant’s initiative that aims to fast-track the process of bringing taxis to the skies, a concept it has already explored with plans to launch UberAIR in the future.