Kittyhawk, an air taxi company backed by Google co-founder Larry Page, is shutting down, a setback for the long-elusive dream of developing a flying car.
"We have made the decision to shut down Kittyhawk and we are still working on the details of the next steps," Kittyhawk tweeted on Wednesday. Kittyhawk's technology is expected to continue in the form of Wisk Aero, a joint venture with Boeing. Boeing said Wednesday that Wisk's operations will not be affected by the closure of Kittyhawk.
Kittyhawk was founded in 2010 to pioneer the so-called electric vertical take-off and landing vehicle (evtool) market. The enigmatic company is run by longtime Google executive Sebastian Thrun, who has worked on Google's self-driving cars, augmented reality glasses, and other projects.
Kittyhawk is one of several startups working on an electric vertical take-off and landing vehicle concept, but it's proving to be more of a challenge than some expected. Air taxis have crashed several times during testing in recent months, raising concerns about their safety.