Bell reveals the ‘Nexus’ VTOL
Bell has unveiled the final design of its air taxi – the Bell Nexus.
Bell Flight took the stage at CES 2019 today to reveal the configuration and a full-scale model of its VTOL air taxi. The cabin of the aircraft was teased at CES 2018 and since then, Bell has partnered with several different avionics and engine manufacturers to finalize the aircraft.
The Nexus features six ducted tilt-rotor fans, similar to Bell’s previous tiltrotor military aircraft the V-280 Valor.
Mitch Snyder, Bell president and CEO said: “As space at the ground level becomes limited, we must solve transportation challenges in the vertical dimension – and that’s where Bell’s on-demand mobility vision takes hold.”
Since Bell revealed it was working on a VTOL, it has partnered with Safran, EPS, Thales, Moog and Garmin to collaborate on the Nexus. Safran provides the propulsion, EPS the energy storage, Thales the flight-control computer, Moog the actuation systems and Garmin the avionics.
The cabin of the aircraft is configurable and will vary in payload and passenger seating so as to be able to serve other missions aside from air-taxi services. Bell hopes the Nexus will be able to serve medical, law-enforcement, offshore missions and on-demand delivery services.
Mr Snyder continued: “The industry has anticipated the reveal of our air taxi for some time, so Bell is very proud of this moment. We believe the design, taken with our strategic approach to build this infrastructure, will lead to the successful deployment of the Bell Nexus to the world.”
Bell has a full-scale model of the aircraft on display on the CES 2019 show floor. Pictures of the model can be seen on Bell’s Twitter page.
In February, Bell dropped the ‘Helicopter’ from its name to rebrand as an air-mobility company shortly after it first revealed the FCX-001 air-taxi cabin.
Bell VTOL Timeline
April 2017 – Uber partners with Bell for VTOL development
January 2018 – Bell reveals air taxi cabin at CES 2018
February – Bell Helicopter rebrands
June 2018 – Bell partners with Safran
October 2018 – Bell partners with Garmin
October 2018 – Bell partners with Thales
November 2018 – Bell partners with EPS