Will GM Ever Offer Super Cruise in Cheaper Trims?
Over the decades, General Motors has continued to innovate and launch improved features. One of the most recent is Super Cruise, an advanced driver-assistance system. But semiautonomous driving tech doesn’t come cheap, and GM has been selective about which cars include this feature. Will GM ever offer Super Cruise in cheaper trims?
How does Super Cruise work?
A semiautonomous driving feature, Super Cruise is among the first hands-free driver-assistance technology for compatible highways. As long as the driver remains attentive, the system allows for hands-free vehicle operation. It’s particularly beneficial for its lane-centering feature, which identifies lane markings to keep vehicles safely centered in their lanes.
There are five vehicle automation levels, with Level 5 being fully autonomous. Super Cruise is Level 2, meaning it’s not fully autonomous.
The system promises to make long drives more comfortable by using cameras, sensors, and GPS data to detect changing road conditions. However, the system does not come standard in all GM vehicles, and even models with Super Cruise have optional upgrades like Automatic Lane Change and Trailering.
Will GM include Super Cruise in cheaper trims?
Drivers who want Super Cruise should be prepared to shell out more money. The tech debuted in Cadillac vehicles, but General Motors soon rolled out the feature in several other GM makes and models.
For instance, consumers who want Super Cruise can get it in higher trims of the 2023 Chevy Silverado 1500, Tahoe, Suburban, and Bolt EUV. It’s also available in upscale GMC models such as the 2023 GMC Sierra 1500 Denali.
One thing those vehicles have in common is that including this driving tech increases the purchase price considerably.
According to Road & Track, adding Super Cruise to a new Cadillac costs about $2,500 upfront, along with an active subscription to the technology. The first three years are included in the vehicle purchase price, but after the initial three-year period, the owner must pay $25 monthly to continue using the tech. Other OnStar plans give subscribers access to the semiautonomous driving system for about $15 per month, depending on the subscription level and vehicle type.
Ultimately, Super Cruise hikes the cost of a new GM vehicle by a substantial amount, especially when factoring in the long-term price of the feature. Furthermore, because it’s exclusive, Super Cruise is a big moneymaker for the company. For that reason, GM likely won’t include the system in cheaper trims anytime soon.
When did GM launch its semiautonomous driving tech?
Super Cruise has been around for nearly a decade. Although General Motors announced the system in 2013, the company didn’t officially launch it until four years later, in the 2018 Cadillac CT6.
After a positive reception, GM expanded Super Cruise technology to include more compatible highways. By 2020, the company had enhanced the system with lane-change functionality. It had also become one of the most in-demand features, with more consumers eager to experience hands-free driving.
For those willing and able to pay for it, Super Cruise makes driving easier and safer.