Surf Air (URF, Santa Monica) parent Surf Air Mobility Inc. has placed an initial order for 100 Cessna (single turboprop) Grand Caravan EX aircraft with 50 more on option as part of an exclusive partnership with Textron Aviation (Wichita Cessna Aircraft Field) to develop an electrified version of the aircraft, the companies have announced. Deliveries of the first 20 are expected to begin in the first half of 2024.

Surf Air Mobility will convert the aircraft using its "proprietary electric or hybrid-electric powertrain technology". It aims to have the electrified model certified by the US Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) in 2026, it said in a statement.

Under the deal, Surf Air Mobility will also be the exclusive provider to Textron of certain battery electric and hybrid electric powertrain technology for the Cessna Grand Caravan model.

Surf Air intends to use electric and hybrid-electric Cessna Grand Caravans to expand its network, offering short-haul direct services and creating a sustainable regional transport platform in North America.

According to the companies, the planned benefits of the venture include cutting operating costs and carbon emissions, making the aircraft operable at numerous airports without charging stations, reducing the environmental impact of flying, enabling more affordable and accessible direct flights, and allowing more Cessna Grand Caravan owners to upgrade to electric or hybrid powertrains.