General Motors has announced that it will expand the reach of its Super Cruise ADAS to more than 400,000 miles (643,737 km) of roads across the U.S. and Canada – double the 200,000 miles of roads it can currently be operated on.
The expansion will provide more of the company’s customers across North America access to hands-free driving on select stretches of roads. Today, it works on a number of mapped divided highways – often referred to as interstates. The expansion will now see this compatibility grow to non-divided state and federal highways, also referred to as routes, that connect smaller cities and towns. GM noted that some notable routes spread across North America would be included as part of the upgrade. Among these are Route 66, which stretches from Chicago to Los Angeles; the Pacific Coast Highway that runs along the Californian coastline; the Overseas Highway from Miami to Florida Keys; and the Trans-Canada Highway which navigates the country from east to west.
When engaged, Super Cruise unites the vehicle’s LiDAR map data, cameras, radars, and GPS to keep it travelling along its lane. These individual systems work together through the sensor fusion capability built into the ADAS which creates a sensory field around the vehicle. Operating at SAE Level 2, Super Cruise can accelerate or brake to maintain a certain distance selected by the user from the vehicle ahead of it while steering to uphold its lane position.
On select models, it can perform lane changes initiated by itself or the driver to pass traffic or move away from a lane that may be ending. Since its introduction in the 2018 Cadillac GT6, Super Cruise has provided a driver monitoring system that utilizes an infrared camera to track the driver’s head position and eye movements. This system works to ensure that the driver is attentive to the road ahead in the event that Super Cruise needs to hand back control to them.
The first vehicles to benefit from the upgraded Super Cruise ADAS will be those built on GM’s Vehicle Intelligence Platform (VIP) electrical architecture. Owners of VIP-equipped vehicles that feature the ADAS, such as the Cadillac Escalade, GMC Hummer, and Chevrolet Silverado, will be able to install the upgrade as a complimentary over-the-air update later this year. Owners of vehicles that are not built on this architecture, but do feature Super Cruise, will receive a smaller version of this update further down the line.