The world's first full-sized Hyperloop passenger vehicle is under construction in France.
Carbures S.A.; an aeronautical industry supplier, is building the vehicle for the crowdsourced unicorn Hyperloop Transportation Technology (HTT), TechCrunch reported. The capsule is supposed to be delivered to an HTT facility in Toulouse, France in 2018.
The vehicle will be around 100 feet long, nine feet in diameter and weigh around 20 tons, HTT CEO Dirk Ahlborn revealed. According to TechCrunch the pod will be able to carry between 28 and 40 passengers depending on the seating arrangements.
The pod will apparently be made of steel which will be welded together. Some pictures of the pod which is similar to the fuselage of an airliner under construction are shown at Tech Crunch's website.
Where it Will Fly?
Building the vehicle itself which is a sort of ground level airplane is easy. Any aircraft manufacturer can accomplish that.
What is not clear is where the pod will "fly" because HTT has no test track, there is a plan for one at an old air force base near Toulouse but no indication one is under construction. An intriguing possibility is that HTT will test the pod at its archrival Hyperloop One's test track in North Las Vegas, Nevada.
Photos and video released on line show that a substantial amount of construction has been completed on that track. An interesting possibility is that HTT will concentrate on building vehicles for Hyperloop while Hyperloop One provides the tubes.
Another is that Hyperloop One plans to concentrate on freight; which was its CEO Rob Lloyd has said, while HTT specializes in passengers. That means Hyperloop might become like the airline aviation industry where some companies haul freight and others haul people.
It also means that HTT might soon have some huge competitors; including Airbus SE (OTC: OTCPK:EADSF), Lockheed Martin (NYSE: LMT) and Boeing (NYSE: BA), which have had decades of experience building pressurized high speed vehicles - namely airplanes. Boeing has been building airliners and military aircraft since the 1920s. Therefore it might be a good idea to invest in those companies if you're looking for a Hyperloop investment.
It might be possible for anybody to ride in the Hyperloop in less than a year. The news articles make it sound as if HTT is going to start offering the public Hyperloop rides soon, which is very exciting news indeed if true.
Disclosure: I/we have no positions in any stocks mentioned, and no plans to initiate any positions within the next 72 hours.