Lilium has chosen Aciturri, a global manufacturer of aerostructures and aero engine components, to handle production of its Lilium Jet’s primary composite structures. The long-term partnership also marks a significant step towards prototyping the eVTOL aircraft for serial production.

It follows a competitive procurement process and marks a new growth segment for Aciturri, which has two lines of business; design, manufacture and assembly of aerostructures, and the manufacture of engine components: primary structures, casings, rings and high precision machining.

It has experience in the design and manufacturing of major airframe components for Airbus, Boeing, and Embraer, and will use materials supplied by Toray Industries to work on the Lilium Jet.

Yves Yemsi, Chief Program Officer at Lilium, said: “During my 16 years at Airbus, I became well acquainted with Aciturri’s capabilities in producing complex composite structures for commercial aircraft, to exacting quality standards. Few companies in the world have mastered designing and manufacturing aerospace composite structures like Aciturri.

“It is for this reason that the company is an ideal partner for Lilium, as we continue our strategy of working with the best tier one aerospace suppliers. This is imperative as we manage de-risking high volume production of our aircraft. We are excited to have Aciturri fully on board as we prepare for prototyping and serial manufacture ahead of our commercial launch.”

Lilium’s engineers will now work together with Aciturri on a bespoke design, accounting for the industrialisation of the manufacturing process, the design of the complex fuselage structure, as well as the highly integrated canards and wing structures which support the aircraft propulsion systems.

Commenting further on the partnership, Alvaro Fernandez Baragaño, Chief Executive Officer at Aciturri, added: “We have long sought innovation in all that we do, and Lilium is no exception. We look forward to building this special relationship to support Lilium in achieving their vision of bringing this unique aircraft to life.

“This long-term partnership allows us to work collaboratively with Lilium through its early operational years, and beyond, throughout which we will continue to explore new methods and advanced technologies which our advanced techniques are capable of achieving, to ensure production of the highest quality and at growing scale.”

Lilium’s announcement with Aciturri adds to several other important developments from the German startup, as it continues on its path to launch commercial services in cities from 2025.

The company is working with Ferrovial to develop a network of vertiports linking cities in Florida, USA, and in Europe, has signed partnerships with both Dusseldorf Airport and Cologne/Bonn Airport as it looks to develop regional air mobility networks in North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany’s most densely populated state.