Joby Aviation selects Dayton, Ohio, for first scaled electric air taxi factory

Joby Aviation has selected Dayton, Ohio as the new site for its first scaled electric aircraft factory, with the company preparing to invest up to $500 million in the new site as it looks to start selling air taxi rides as soon as 2025.

Today’s announcement puts to rest months of speculation on the location for the site, which will reportedly provide up to 2,000 jobs. TechCrunch was the first to report that Ohio was on the company’s short-list. According to today’s announcement, state and local economic programs agreed to pony up upwards of $325 million in incentives and benefits to sweeten the deal.

“We plan to deliver up to 500 aircraft per year,” JoeBen Bevirt said in a press conference earlier today. “That’s a volume of aircraft that isn’t typical in the aviation world outside of the very biggest players, and we’re glad to have our strategic partner and investor Toyota alongside us for this important journey.”

Toyota is Joby’s largest external shareholder. Joby also has a partnership with Delta Air Lines for airline customers traveling to and from airports. Joby and Delta are looking to roll out the service in New York and Los Angeles first.

The new site at Dayton International Airport will occupy 140 acres to mass produce eVTOL (electric vertical take-off and landing) aircraft, a significant growth from Joby’s current pilot production line in Marina, California. The company rolled its first aircraft off that production line earlier this year.

Construction on the facility is expected to start next year, with aircraft production starting as early as 2025. That same year, Joby anticipates the Federal Aviation Administration greenlighting the company to start commercial operations.

Joby’s first aircraft will be able to fly four passengers and a pilot at speeds up to 200 miles per hour, for journeys up to 100 miles -- all powered by electricity, rather than jet fuel. The company’s business model is similar to a taxi service, ferrying customers on shorter trips in dense urban areas or to airports.

The company is reportedly looking to start hiring immediately. Joby set up a new website -- called JobyInOhio -- for people interested in learning more about working at the future production facility.