Archer Aviation, the company behind the launch of electric air taxis in the UAE, will make the regional debut of its Midnight aircraft at the Dubai Airshow next week.

The California-based listed firm, which specialises in electric vertical take-off and landing (eVTOL) aircraft, is expected to rollout electric air taxi operations in the UAE capital by 2026, following a deal with the Abu Dhabi Investment Office (ADIO) in October.

The Dubai Airshow, which runs from November 13 until 17, will also feature opportunities to experience the aircraft at the event. Once in operation, the air service will allow passengers to replace 60 to 90-minute commutes by road transport with estimated 10 to 20-minute electric air taxi flights. The Midnight will be a piloted, four-passenger aircraft with the capability to perform back-to-back flights with minimal charge time in between.

In addition to its goal to launch operations in Abu Dhabi and Dubai, Archer is working with global manufacturing partner Stellantis and regional partners Falcon Aviation and GAL-AMMROC to build out aircraft manufacturing capabilities to service regional demands in the UAE and surrounding areas, the company said.

Air taxis or aerial ridesharing is a concept that has been embraced by UAE authorities with a push for such operations to take flight by 2026. In February, Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, posted on X (formerly known as Twitter) that he had approved the design of new air taxi stations, which would begin operations in three years.

(Writing by Bindu Rai, editing by Seban Scaria)