The notion of flying car stocks has long been the realm of science fiction. However, flying cars are fast becoming a reality. In July, Alef Aeronautics Received FAA approval for testing and began taking reservations. The company, which is not publicly traded, expects to begin delivery of its $300,000 vehicle in 2025. That vehicle called the Model A, is expected to have an on-road range of 200 miles and an in-air range of 110 miles.
The publicly traded companies that lead the sector’s development are developing slightly different vehicles. Although they are referred to as flying cars, they are more similar to electric helicopters for the most part. So-called eVTOLs (Electric Vertical Takeoff and Landing Vehicles) have become the next hot thing.
Joby Aviation (JOBY)
Joby Aviation (NYSE:JOBY) is arguably the leading flying car stock. The company has made tremendous progress throughout 2023.
Most recently, Joby Aviation, in conjunction with NASA, conducted a simulation that showed that its vehicles will be capable of conducting 120 flights hourly in busy airport environments. Flying car stocks are showing particularly high potential as an application in the so-called Air Taxi space. Companies like Joby Aviation have developed strong partnerships and continue to develop potential routes between major airport hubs and surrounding areas.
The end goal is to create a service that drastically cuts down the commute between a person’s home and the airport. For example, the company has given guidance that it expects to cut the commute between John F Kennedy Airport and the surrounding area from 1 hour to 7 minutes in the future.
Last month, the company received a grant to support the expansion of its production facilities in Marina, California. The grant, valued at $9.8 million, will support the creation of 690 additional jobs.
Archer Aviation (ACHR)
Archer Aviation (NYSE:ACHR) is the primary competitor of Joby Aviation and the other leading name in the flying car stock space. Both companies are developing flying cars that have applications in the air taxi space as well as in the defense realm.
In early October, Archer Aviation received the first $1 million payment from the Air Force in a contract worth as much as $142 million. That payment is related to the delivery of a flight training simulator. The delivery paves the path forward for the DoD’s future purchase of Archer Aviation’s Midnight eVTOLs.
Archer Aviation’s business is not solely relegated to the public sector. The company has made strong commercial relationships. Recently, Archer Aviation signed a memorandum of understanding with Air Chateau, a private firm in Dubai, for the delivery of 100-midnight aircraft worth up to $500 million.
Archer Aviation is also connected to major airports and Airlines. The company has forged a strong relationship with United Airlines (NASDAQ:UAL) which relates to O’Hare airport in Chicago. Further, the company previously announced plans for routes to and from Newark Liberty Airport.
Lilium (NASDAQ:LILM) Is located in Germany and is developing eVTOLs like Joby Aviation and Archer Aviation.
The company’s vehicles are functionally the same as those of the aforementioned companies. All three are eVTOLs. However, Lillian’s vehicles have a different appearance. Whereas Archer and Joby’s eVTOLs have propellers, Lilium’s eVTOLs feature a series of electric Jets on their four wings.
Investors should also note that Lilium is fundamentally riskier than either of the two competitors mentioned here. While Lilium only recently regained compliance with Nasdaq due to its share price, both Joby and Archer boast stocks that trade near $7.
The company is also significantly further behind in terms of development. It was only in early December that the company began production of the jets that will propel its vehicles. A day later the company announced that it signed a memorandum of understanding with Lufthansa (OTCMKTS:DLAKY). While Lilium is farther behind and riskier, it is clearly focused on the development of air taxi services that could grow rapidly over the next few years. This makes it one of those flying car stocks to buy.
On the date of publication, Alex Sirois did not have (either directly or indirectly) any positions in the securities mentioned in this article. The opinions expressed in this article are those of the writer, subject to the InvestorPlace.com Publishing Guidelines.