Okay, I’ll admit the idea of flying cars terrifies me. It looks cool in sci-fi movies, but the reality is going to be scary as hell. However, the best flying car stocks sound right up my alley.
As a former police officer, I’ve seen how people can’t handle driving a two-ton vehicle with all four wheels on the ground. Putting them in the air is a prescription for disaster.
Sure, many of the leading flying car company stocks are pursuing commercial applications. The electric vertical take-off and landing (eVTOL) aircraft have been dubbed “flying taxis” because they will ferry upwards of a dozen passengers across short distances. However, others are building flying passenger cars. That’s where I see the train running off the rails.
Having said that, even though I view the development with apprehension, I’m not averse to making money off the ensuing chaos either. I don’t smoke and think it’s bad for you if you do, but I still have tobacco stocks in my portfolio. Why not consider the best flying car stocks on the market today as well?
China seems further along in flying car development than other countries. The country’s leading electric car maker XPeng (NYSE:XPEV) is also leading the way forward in airborne vehicles.
Last October it performed the first global flight of its X2 flying car in Dubai. Earlier this year, XPeng was given a special flight permit by the Chinese government. That made AeroHT the first flying car stock in China to receive official certification for flight safety.
Since debuting in July 2021, the X2 had logged more than 3,000 experiments and test flights at the time of the award. Unlike other companies pursuing flying cars, Xpeng designed the X2 to fit in a homeowner’s garage.
Founded in 2013 as Heitech, XPeng later purchased the eVTOL company. It changed the name to XPeng AeroHT and made it a subdivision of its EV business in 2020.
With Xpeng being the biggest EV maker in China, the largest market for EVs and now the first to gain certification in flying cars, this automaker is one to buy for the future.
Joby Aviation (JOBY)
Gaining certification is also what makes Joby Aviation (NASDAQ:JOBY) a standout candidate. In June, the U.S.-based flying car stock also received certification from the Federal Aviation Administration. The Special Airworthiness Certificate means Joby completed two of the five steps needed towards operating an actual air taxi business.
Joby recently submitted the paperwork for the third step of the process, and is on target towards launching commercial service in 2025.
After getting cleared for flight testing, Edwards Air Force Base will receive the first pilot production model to put through its paces. The Air Force will test the craft as part of a $131 million contract Joby was awarded.
The flying car stock also has significant industry backing. Toyota (NYSE:TM), for example, invested $400 million in Joby. Tetsuo Ogawa, the CEO of the carmaker’s North American operations, joined Joby’s board of directors. Toyota is Joby’s largest outside investor. It also received investments from Delta Air Lines (NYSE:DAL) and Uber Technologies (NYSE:UBER).
There are a lot of big backers pushing for Joby Aviation to succeed. It should be one of the game-changing flying car stocks to buy.
Archer Aviation (ACHR)
Archer Aviation (NASDAQ:ACHR) is also pursuing FAA certification, and just received its own Special Airworthiness Certificate for its Midnight aircraft. It also has a $142 million agreement with the Air Force and the Marine Corp is looking into contracting with Archer as well.
The flying car stock has well-heeled backers, too. United Airlines (NASDAQ:UAL) became Archer’s first customer back in 2021 before the company even went public. The carrier agreed to buy $1 billion worth of flying cars with an option to purchase $500 million more. Automaker Stellantis (NYSE:STLA) also invested in Archer.
More recently, United announced Archer would operate the first air taxi service from Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport.
The fast-moving pace of announcements in the industry show Archer Aviation is able to hold its own against other well-financed rivals. Its stock is also doing better too.
Archer stock more than tripled in 2023 compared to Joby rising 123%. That gives it a $2 billion market valuation, making it the second largest pure-play flying car stock behind Joby at $5.2 billion.
On the date of publication, Rich Duprey did not hold (either directly or indirectly) any positions in the securities mentioned in this article. The opinions expressed in this article are those of the writer, subject to the InvestorPlace.com Publishing Guidelines.