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Aioi Nissay invests in U.S. flying car startup

  • July 22, 2020
  • , Jiji Press , 4:12 p.m.
  • English Press

Tokyo, July 22 (Jiji Press)–Japan’s Aioi Nissay Dowa Insurance Co. has invested in U.S. startup Joby Aviation, which is developing electric vertical takeoff and landing, or eVTOL, aircraft, better known as flying cars.

Through the investment in and collaboration with the California-based firm, the Japanese nonlife insurer aims to develop specialized insurance products and services for flying cars, according to Aioi Nissay’s announcement on Tuesday.

The eVTOL aircraft being developed by Joby Aviation will have a range of up to 300 kilometers and a top speed of 320 kilometers per hour. It can continue traveling even if one of its six propellers becomes inoperable.

The U.S. firm aims to offer flying taxi services using its eVTOL aircraft.

Toyota Motor Corp. <7203> has also been collaborating with Joby Aviation. The leading Japanese automaker invested 43 billion yen in the startup in January this year.

Aioi Nissay, a unit of MS&AD Insurance Group Holding Inc. <8725>, hopes to apply to eVTOL aircraft its expertise in telematics automobile insurance, which utilizes information technology to set varying insurance premiums in line with travel distance and driving behavior.

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