Now, according to The New York Times, Kitty Hawk will on Tuesday announce it has reached an agreement with the government of New Zealand to test its aircraft in order to get officially certified for flying in the country. Meanwhile, Google's Larry Page has been funding a company that will bypass all of that.
On a blog post on the Cora website, the company highlighted the certification issues that prevented the aircraft from being brought out of the R&D process, saying: "A path to certifying an air taxi for everyday use just didn't exist".
Cora is capable of traveling at up to 110mph (180km/s) with a range of 62 miles (100km) carrying two passengers. It's been testing the vehicles through a local operator called Zephyr Airworks, and Cora has an "experimental airworthiness certificate" from both New Zealand and United States aviation authorities.
Kitty Hawk had previously tested another flying vehicle prototype called the "Flyer" last April. Like Kitty Hawk's Cora, many rely on drone technology and vertical takeoff and landing, so they don't need a runway.
"Let's not forget this part of the world is where Richard Pearse first pioneered flying, something we honour with a sculpture within our airport terminal, so it's great to see this bold thinking being revealed here too", he says.
Mr Page's wholly owned aviation firm Kitty Hawk - named after the Wright brothers' home town in North Carolina - has unveiled an air-taxi prototype eight-years in the making.
The company has secretly been testing their "flying cars" since October 2017 in the Canterbury region of New Zealand's South Island.
Zephyr Airworks is working in collaboration with New Zealand's business ministry, its transport ministry, and its Civil Aviation Authority.