Saudia, the national flag carrier of Saudi Arabia, and Lilium, developer of the first all-electric vertical take-off and landing (eVTOL) jet, have announced a memorandum of understanding (MoU) for the development of a network across the country.

Saudia intends to launch the service with the purchase of 100 Lilium Jets including new electric point-to-point connections to act as feeder connections to the airline’s hubs for business class guests.

The proposed arrangement will make Saudia the first airline in the MENA region to purchase 100 Lilium Jets alongside yearly support services.

Regulatory approval

Saudia said it also expects to support Lilium with the necessary regulatory approval processes in Saudi Arabia for certification of the Lilium Jet.

Captain Ibrahim S Koshy, CEO of Saudia said: “Saudia, building on its commitment to be an industry leading airline committed to sustainability, consider our eVTOL network project with Lilium to be an undertaking of great significance for the kingdom’s aviation industry and will contribute effectively to spurring sustainable tourism in Saudi using zero-emission aviation.

“Saudia intends to meet a growing demand for regional air mobility and offer our valued guests a superior on-board experience. The potential for such an airborne transit network is limitless.”

‘Sustainability a priority’

Alexander Asseily, vice chairman of Lilium said: “We are thrilled to work with innovative partners for whom sustainability is a priority.

“This partnership with Saudia, our first in the Middle East, is an exciting development for Lilium. We look forward to working with Saudia to deploy an eVTOL network across Saudi Arabia.”
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