If driving hands-free is the future of luxury then Cadillac's currently leading the way and is about add even more functionality to its system.
On Tuesday General Motors' luxury division announced its Super Cruise driver-assist system–a Level 2 system–being upgraded with automatic lane change abilities. The upgraded Super Cruise system will first be an option on the 2021 CT4 and CT5 followed by the 2021 Escalade. It will start rolling out in the second half of 2020.
Dubbed Lane Change On Demand, the added functionality to the Super Cruise hands-free driver assist system will allow driver's to tap the turn signal stalk to tell the system a lane change is desired.
Once the driver taps the turn signal stalk the system takes over and checks the status of traffic ahead, around, and behind the vehicle to determine whether a lane change is safe at the current time. If deemed safe the Super Cruise system will execute the lane change.
Throughout the process the gauge cluster will tell the driver the current system status, whether the lane change has begun, or is completed.
New rear-facing sensors along with updated vehicle tracking software algorithms are onboard to ensure Super Cruise only changes lanes when there's a large enough gap, according to Super Cruise chief engineer Mario Maiorana.
Cadillac spokeswoman Arianna Kughn confirmed to Motor Authority CT6s with Super Cruise today can not be upgraded to have the lane change function due to it relying on GM's latest digital architecture for more electrical bandwidth and processing power.
Beyond the lane change capability the latest Super Cruise update adds richer map data to enable the system to deliver more human-like driving behavior. The new map information is also said to improve the system's ability to handle highway interchanges and turns.
The lane change functionality follows Super Cruise's upgrade in 2019 where the system received 70,000 miles of new map data, bringing the total miles where the system can be used to 200,000. Note, the map data still only covers parts of the United States and Canada.