Toyota is exploring a new flight path for mobility through a collaboration with Joby Aviation, an aerospace company developing and commercializing all-electric vertical take-off and landing (eVTOL) aircraft. Joby’s eVTOL aircraft combines elements of helicopters and small airplanes for high reliability, zero emissions, fast flight speeds, and quiet operations.
Toyota’s collaboration with Joby is anticipated to help bring on-demand urban air transportation into the mainstream for moving people and goods.
In addition to investing $394 million to lead Joby's $590 million Series C financing, Toyota will share its expertise in manufacturing, quality, and cost controls for the development and production of Joby's air vehicle.
"Air transportation has been a long-term goal for Toyota, and while we continue our work in the automobile business, this agreement sets our sights to the sky," said Toyota Motor Corp. President and CEO Akio Toyoda. "Through this new and exciting endeavor, we hope to deliver freedom of movement and enjoyment to customers everywhere, on land, and now, in the sky."
Joby Aviation Founder and CEO JoeBen Bevirt said: "This collaboration with Toyota represents an unprecedented commitment of money and resources for us, and for this new industry, from one of the world's leading automakers. I am excited to harness Toyota's engineering and manufacturing prowess."
Both companies’ leaders believe leveraging automobile technology synergies with best practices from the Toyota Production System will facilitate efficient mass production of these aircraft and help Joby deliver high-quality, durable, and reliable aircraft that meet exacting safety standards.
Toyota Motor Corp. Executive Vice President Shigeki Tomoyama will join Joby's board of directors to play an active role in setting strategic direction.