Xpeng-backed flying car startup raises $500 mln

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BEIJING, Oct 19 (Reuters) – HT Aero, a flying car startup backed by Chinese electrical automobile maker Xpeng Inc (9868.HK), stated on Tuesday it has raised over $500 million in its newest funding spherical.

The startup, based in 2013 and beforehand referred to as Xpeng Heitech, raised the brand new cash from IDG Capital, 5Y Capital, Xpeng and others on this funding spherical, it stated in an announcement.

HT Aero stated it will use the funding to develop applied sciences and broaden its workforce. It goals to ship a flying car mannequin, which is able to have the ability to drive on street, to clients in 2024.

HT Aero didn’t disclose its valuation after the funding spherical.

Companies from start-ups to world carmakers are racing to develop business flying “robo-taxis”, hoping to money in on a market Morgan Stanley says could possibly be price $1.5 trillion by 2040.

Other automakers which can be creating flying automobiles in China embody Geely’s (GEELY.UL) Terrafugia, which is constructing a manufacturing facility in central metropolis of Wuhan. Volkswagen AG (VOWG_p.DE) can be learning the trade in China.

Regulators in China, nevertheless, have but to element guidelines on flying automobiles.

Reporting by Yilei Sun and Brenda Goh; Editing by Lincoln Feast.

The logo on an XPeng Inc. P7 performance electric vehicle is seen outside the New York Stock Exchange in New York, U.S., August 27, 2020. REUTERS/Mike Segar