XPeng reveals 6-wheeled Cybertruck-style SUV concept with eVTOL capability
XPeng's Land Aircraft Carrier represents a significant leap forward in transportation technology.
In the past, the idea of flying cars was a distant dream, something we used to say would be a reality in the 2020s, 40 or 50 years ago. However, it seems that the future has arrived sooner than expected, as XPeng, the innovative Chinese automaker, recently unveiled a groundbreaking concept at the 2023 Tech Day event. They introduced the XPeng Land Aircraft Carrier, an astonishing blend of an off-road vehicle and a two-seat electric vertical-takeoff-and-landing (eVTOL) air module. This innovative creation promises to reshape the way we commute and explore off-road terrain. But, as impressive as this technological marvel is, XPeng still has some work to do in terms of promoting its unique package effectively.
The XPeng Land Aircraft Carrier: An Overview
XPeng's AeroHT division has crafted a one-of-a-kind vehicle, the Land Aircraft Carrier, which combines a versatile hybrid electric off-road vehicle with an eVTOL air module. This groundbreaking concept is the first mass-produced model designed to facilitate flying, commuting, and off-road adventures.
The Land Vehicle
The terrestrial component of the Land Aircraft Carrier resembles the iconic Tesla Cybertruck with its striking triangular shape and angular design. However, it distinguishes itself with a unique three-axle, six-wheel configuration designed for maximum off-road performance. While the design is inspired by lunar exploration vehicles, XPeng is still in the process of fine-tuning it to perfection.
The eVTOL Air Module
The eVTOL air module, which sits in the rear of the Land Aircraft Carrier, is a sixth-generation marvel, developed by XPeng's aircraft division. It features six foldable rotors for vertical take-off, making it ideal for a variety of applications, including emergency services and mountain rescue missions. What sets it apart from the competition is its remarkable ability to stay airborne even if two of its six rotors malfunction, enhancing safety and reliability.
For emergency services, the eVTOL is equipped with a multi-parachute rescue system capable of carrying up to 1,000 kilograms (2,204 pounds). Notably, it can initiate descent from 50 meters (164 feet) above the ground, as opposed to the industry-standard 200 meters (656 feet), ensuring a more stable landing.
Versatility in Design
XPeng takes versatility to the next level by allowing several components of the Land Aircraft Carrier's cabin, such as the steering wheel and dashboard, to be adapted for both land and air travel. The eVTOL offers an impressive 270-degree panoramic view and adheres to all single-point safety requirements with its distributed all-electric propulsion system.
Extended-Range Hybrid System
One of the Land Aircraft Carrier's most impressive features is its extended-range hybrid system, which can recharge the eVTOL while on the move. This capability enables users to reach higher elevations, park, and deploy the air module wherever needed, eliminating the need for time-consuming charging stops at home or charging stations along the way.
Off-Roading and Adventure
While XPeng has not provided exhaustive information about the terrestrial aspects of the Land Aircraft Carrier, a video uploaded on YouTube hints at an adaptive suspension system that can adjust the vehicle's height to suit the user's needs. Furthermore, the model is designed to function as a camper van, offering foldable chairs, special sunshades, a picnic table, and even a tent. This feature provides users with an opportunity to enjoy outdoor adventures, whether it's a day at the beach or a weekend in the mountains.
Room for Improvement
Despite the remarkable potential of the XPeng Land Aircraft Carrier, there are aspects that the company needs to address. In particular, the way they promote the package leaves room for improvement. A promotional video features individuals wearing summer clothes and enjoying the shade in the midst of snowy mountains. This discrepancy between the marketing and the reality of off-road exploration suggests that XPeng needs to refine its promotional strategies to better align with the capabilities of its innovative product.