This may look like a fighter jet from Top Gun: Maverick, but you’d be mistaken.
It’s actually a luxury eVTOL and a version of it will soon redesigned to deliver organs for medical transplants.
Italian company Manta’s first aircraft – the ANN – was originally designed to be used by wealthy executives for regional journeys, and the company still plans to begin certification of its first two-seater ANN2 next year.
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But Milan-based air ambulance company Avionord recently acquired a stake in the company and agreed to buy up to 15 ANN aircraft, with delivery expected to start in 2026.
And now Manta has retooled its ANN platform to offer a new cargo version.
Previous designs were offered in one, two and four-seat guises.
The aircraft has a range of 600 kilometers (373 miles) and a top speed of 300km/h (186mph), which certainly gives you an idea of just what it can do.
The ANN Cargo, based on the four-seater ANN4, can transport two medical personnel along with organs destined for transplants.
What makes it particularly viable for this purpose is not only its impressive range and top speed, but also its running costs.
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The ANN is propelled by four ducted electric fans, featuring onboard generators to extend its range in flight.
“In combination with the low infrastructure requirements and overall costs, it’s a fraction of the cost of a helicopter,” Manta Aircraft CEO Lucas Marchesini said.
Although the company is making a slight pivot towards emergency services, the luxury versions of the ANN are still planned.
As we said certification testing for the ANN will kick off in 2023, with production currently slated for 2025.
But it’s anybody’s guess at how much it’ll cost.