GM Expands Hands-Free Super Cruise Tech Reach
In August, GM revealed that its advanced driver assistance system (ADAS) would soon be able to operate on 400,000 miles of roads across the U.S. and Canada, including non-divided highways, a doubling of the coverage currently offered in North America.
Now the upgrade is ready to be rolled out, and GM has provided more details. An over-the-air (OTA) update will initially see owners of some of the firm’s premium SUVs gain access to the enhanced network.
The group of cars to benefit includes the 2023 Chevrolet Tahoe (High Country and Premier trims); 2023 Chevrolet Suburban (High Country and Premier trims); 2023 Cadillac Escalade, Escalade ESV and Escalade-V; and the 2023 GMC Yukon Denali Ultimate.
Models built on Oct. 3 or later will receive the update, but GM confirmed other vehicles will follow soon after.
“For existing Super Cruise vehicles built on GM’s VIP [Vehicle Intelligence Platform] electrical architecture, GM will expand the road network starting in the coming months via OTA updates at no additional charge,” a statement said.
Vehicles in this group include the Cadillac CT4 and CT5, the GMC Hummer EV and the GMC Sierra and Chevy Silverado pick-ups.
The company also spelled out Super Cruise’s global rollout, stating that 22 models would have the tech by the end of 2023.
Super Cruise uses precision lidar mapping data, real-time cameras, radars and GPS to allow braking, acceleration and, in some instances, lane changes, delivering a hands-free driving experience on compatible roads.
But someone must be behind the wheel at all times, and they are constantly monitored to ensure they are paying attention – otherwise, the tech does not function.
It is rated a Level 2 driver assistance system, as defined by the Society of Automotive Engineers. But concerns have been raised over how it’s being used, with an Insurance Industry for Highway Safety study published in October showing that 53% of owners with tech-enabled vehicles claimed they were comfortable treating their vehicles as fully self-driving – even though they are not.
Meanwhile, GM also confirmed the more advanced Ultra Cruise – perceived as the company’s answer to Tesla’s Full Self Driving – will be available later, “on certain premium entries” before being rolled out more widely alongside Super Cruise “to bring ADAS to more customers on more vehicles, in more regions at more price points.”
The luxurious all-electric Cadillac Celestiq, scheduled to launch in 2024, will offer the Ultra Cruise tech, which delivers automated functionality such as reacting to permanent traffic control devices, following internal navigation routes, observing speed limits, supporting automatic and on-demand lane changes, performing left and right-hand turns, avoiding close objects and parking in residential driveways.