Lilium N.V. (NASDAQ:LILM), developer of all-electric vertical take-off and landing (“eVTOL”) jets and global pioneer in Regional Air Mobility (RAM), announced their partnership with advanced air mobility (AAM) operator UrbanLink to operate Lilium Jets in South Florida. As part of the agreement, UrbanLink will purchase 20 Lilium Jets, with scheduled pre-delivery payments, and become the first airline in the U.S. fully committed to integrating eVTOL aircraft into its fleet.

Newly launched, UrbanLink is led by Ed Wegel, a seasoned airline executive with 40 years of experience in financing, operations, and distribution. Wegel has raised more than $1 billion for aviation ventures and led FAA certifications for two U.S. Part 135 airlines and several U.S. Part 121 carriers, including achieving the 2014 certification of Eastern Air Lines' 737-800 fleet in a record-breaking eight months. Most recently, Wegel served as CEO & Founder of GlobalX, America’s fastest-growing charter airline. Wegel has also served as a board member for private and public airlines including Atlantic Coast Airlines, BWIA International Airlines, and Eastern Airlines. He was also a key developer of JetBlue’s initial business plan.

Wegel said, “While many airlines have discussed the potential of operating eVTOL aircraft, none have made a definitive commitment. UrbanLink will be the first airline in the U.S. to integrate eVTOL aircraft into its fleet. We are dedicated to revolutionizing the way people move to and from as well as within urban cores. After thorough evaluation of various manufacturers, we found the Lilium Jet to be the optimal choice for our needs, thanks to its superior cabin design, range, capacity, and cost-effectiveness.”

Lilium's partnership with UrbanLink marks a critical milestone in accelerating the adoption of AAM in South Florida. UrbanLink’s entry into the region includes plans to utilize the network of Florida vertiports that Lilium and its partners have diligently worked on over the past five years.

UrbanLink sees eVTOLs as a key driver of sustainable regional connectivity across South Florida. The Lilium Jet, with its planned launch range, is poised to fulfill this vision by linking major cities such as Miami, West Palm Beach, Boca Raton, and Fort Lauderdale, extending seamlessly across the peninsula to Marco Island. The service launch is targeted for 2026.

Sebastien Borel, Lilium’s Chief Commercial Officer, said, “We are proud that UrbanLink has selected the Lilium Jet for its network and operations. This is a huge milestone, not only for Lilium, but for the commercialization of eVTOLs in the U.S. We believe that this purchase of eVTOL aircraft is the first by a commercial operator that isn’t invested in the manufacturer that it is purchasing from. This is a sign that the market for eVTOL aircraft has matured and there is growing demand for aircraft that can provide connections between, rather than just within, cities. I know that Ed has the vision and operational expertise to make regional air mobility a success.” 

This order follows the start of assembly of the first Lilium Jet at the end of last year with the first piloted flight test of the Lilium Jet targeted to occur in late 2024.