In response to input from prospective launch customers including United Airlines, Heart Aerospace announced plans to develop the 30-seat ES-30 regional airliner in place of the 19-seat ES-19 model it launched back in 2020. the new aircraft will feature a hybrid-electric propulsion system, giving the option of increasing range to 500 miles from just 125 miles in all-electric mode.
The Swedish company has received a new investment of $10 million, split evenly between Air Canada and the Saab aerospace group. It is aiming to bring the ES-30 into commercial service in 2028, and already has almost 100 provisional orders.
During 2021, Heart had made significant progress in its plans to bring the 19-seat ES-19 electric regional airliner to market in 2026. The company logged provisional sales commitments from airlines including Finnair and United, with the latter having invested in the venture.
Heart's engineering team conducted testing with a ground-based prototype of the complete electric propulsion system. The program plan called for a full-scale prototype, which will be quite close to the series production design, to start flight tests in mid-2024.
In June 2022, Heart changed its strategy to certify the ES-19 from the CS-23 certification process to the CS-25 process. As a result of the similarities between EASA CS-25 and the FAA's 14 CFR Part 25 standards, the change would have allowed for the ES-19 to be more easily delivered to the U.S. market, but makes more sense in context of the subsequent switch to a 30-seat design.