DETROIT — General Motors' latest version of its Super Cruise driver-assist technology, set to debut on the GMC Hummer EV pickup, will allow customers to perform more functions hands-free: towing heavy loads and changing lanes.
The new features will be available on the Hummer pickup when it launches this year. Next year, the updated Super Cruise will roll out on the 2022 GMC Sierra, Chevrolet Silverado and Cadillac Escalade, CT4 and CT5.
Super Cruise is key to GM's zero-crashes, zero-emissions and zero-congestion mission. The technology allows customers to drive hands-free on compatible roads but requires drivers to stay engaged throughout the ride.
The expanded Super Cruise availability furthers GM's plan to launch the technology on 22 vehicles by 2023. The 2022 Cadillac XT6 and Chevy Bolt EUV also offer Super Cruise.
"We're excited to expand Super Cruise to even more new models with additional capabilities to provide our customers with even more opportunities to go hands-free," Mario Maiorana, Super Cruise chief engineer, said in a statement Friday. "The additional Super Cruise-enabled vehicles and new features are an important step toward our goal of enabling hands-free driving 95 percent of the time and getting people more comfortable with letting go of the wheel."
The enhanced Super Cruise automatic lane-change feature initiates a lane change without a prompt from the driver. When the vehicle ahead goes below the speed set in the driver's adaptive cruise control, Super Cruise notifies the driver that the vehicle will change lanes. Then it will move to the left lane when there's an opening and pass the slower vehicle.
The previous version of Super Cruise comes with lane change on demand, which shifts lanes at the driver's request. While trailering, automatic lane change is not active, but Super Cruise's lane change on demand is available.
With the updated technology, drivers can also view Super Cruise-compatible roads in the vehicle navigation system's Google Maps app. The app will show routes available with Super Cruise as drivers search for directions. There are more than 200,000 miles of Super Cruise-compatible roads in the U.S. and Canada today.
Select 2021 models with the previous generation of Super Cruise can upgrade to the enhanced version via an over-the-air update, GM said.