Electric vehicle manufacturer Workhorse has agreed to sell its SureFly electric vertical takeoff and landing (eVTOL) program to Moog for $4 million. Workhorse flew a prototype of the two-seat model in 2018 and last November signed a cooperative research and development agreement with the U.S. Department of Defense to test SureFly for specific military applications.
The hybrid SureFly is powered by a turbine generator with battery backup and has eight props driven by electric motors. It also has a whole-aircraft ballistic parachute for emergencies. In June 2018, Workhorse said it applied to the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration to begin the certification process for the vehicle.
Moog and Workhorse also agreed to form a joint venture to complete development of the latter's HorseFly unmanned aircraft delivery vehicle that is deployed from package vans. Under the proposed purchase agreement with Moog, covered by an October 1 8-K filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission,Workhorse would retain ownership of the HorseFly technology but the two companies would cooperate to develop and deploy it. The HorseFly multicopter has a maximum takeoff weight of just 30 pounds, a 10-pound payload capacity, and a top speed of 50 mph.
Almost 45 percent of Moog's group revenues come from its aircraft controls business. In the U.S. company's latest year-end results, announced on September 28, 2019, the aircraft division accounted for $1.3 billion (9 percent up on 2018) out of total revenues of $2.9 billion (a 7 percent increase).