Automobile behemoth GM’s high end and semi autonomous self drive technology, Super Cruise, will make its market debut with Cadillac’s brand new CT6 sedan this fall. Super Cruise has been under construction for a few years now, and is finally ready to enthrall the automobile market. GM was planning to release the product in 2016, however, to provide its engineers with sufficient time to make the final design as safe as possible, the release date was pushed to 2017.
Barry Walkup, chief engineer on Super Cruise said in a statement:
While it is technically possible for the technology to drive hands-free on other kinds of streets and roads, we feel strongly that this targeted approach is the best to build consumer and regulatory confidence and enthusiasm for advanced mobility.
Super Cruise is somewhat similar to Tesla’s Autopilot when it comes to features. Both of them can take over control while driving on a highway, maintain the lane position and adjust the speed of the vehicle in accordance with the surrounding traffic. Infrared cameras are installed in the steering wheel which track the head position of driver to make sure they pay proper attention while this feature is engaged, and will lert them through the light notification systems present on the steering and audio alerts, if they stop doing so.
A fail-safe measure has also been incorporated which makes sure that the vehicle safely stops in case the driver is not able respond to the alerts. This feature is also a part of Tesla’s Autopilot software. Another similarity which both these software bear is that they may be updated on air.
However, unlike Tesla’s Autopilot, GM is using LiDAR data to train its semi-autonomous highway driving software. GM is deploying a fleet of Lidar equipped vehicles on the roads where Super Cruise is used, so as to take the images of the highway and then provide the data as updates to the software in the car.
Super Cruise is going to be a little heavy on your pocket. The add ons will include a $2,500 upgrade price along with $3,100 driver assist package. Now, with the advent of Super Cruise, Mercedes’ Drive Pilot and rapid updates of Tesla’s Autopilot, one thing is certain, that this year a lot of drivers will be able to enjoy the exquisite taste of hands-free riding.