Cadillac's Super Cruise System Detailed
That’s okay, some so-called drivers claim while eating sandwiches behind the wheels, while car aficionados from all over the world believe that could only ruin the whole driving experience and the feeling you get when stepping behind the wheel of a truly powerful supercar.
Nevertheless, technologies supposed to be installed in cars evolve at a very fast pace and Cadillac, just like any other major carmaker that wants to set itself apart from the rest of the industry, comes with its very own systems.
One of the latest products brought in the spotlight by Cadillac’s engineers is called “Super Cruise” and, as you may guess just by reading its name, is some sort of cruise control system with super powers.
The Americans are trying to keep the technology away from our eyes and ears, but instead they tried only to tease us, showing a video with the system in action, while also publishing a bunch of details concerning the system.
This is the semi-autonomous Cadillac, with some of the features explained during a short testdrive.
In just a few words, the so-called Super Cruise system is more like an adaptive cruise control function with a pack of top-notch improvements, all of which could turn a regular car into a self-driving one.
We all know how a cruise control system works and an adaptive one is no longer a secret: they both rely on sensors and/or cameras to adjust maintain driving speed and, depending on the technologies being used, to adjust speed according to the vehicle in front. If it slows down, your car slows down, if it increases speed, yours will do the same thing.
The Super Cruise system brings everything to a whole new level, providing all these features and a lot more. According to Cadillac engineers, it will
First of all, the new semi-autonomous technology will rely on several radar, ultrasonic sensors and cameras to track the vehicles in front and adjust its position on the road to keep the lane. Obviously, it can also adjust speed, but the most interesting thing is that it will also collect GPS data from the navigation system installed on the car to analyze the route and predict and change in direction.
Cadillac says that many of the technologies that will be included in the new Super Cruise system will debut on the 2013 XTS and ATS luxury sedans as part of the Driver Assist Package, which means that lots of safety gadgets may also be included.
“The primary goal of GM’s autonomous and semi-autonomous vehicle development is safety,” admitted John Capp, General Motors director of Global Active Safety Electronics and Innovation. “In the coming years, autonomous driving systems paired with advanced safety systems could help eliminate the crash altogether by interceding on behalf of drivers before they’re even aware of a hazardous situation. More than ever, consumers will be able to trust their car to do the right thing.”
For example, Safety Alert Seat will be included as well, in order to send a vibration to the driver’s seat and alert him of potential drivers. Lane Departure Warning and Side Blind Zone Alert will also join the play too and help the cruise control system keep the lane without any safety risk.
What’s more, the new cruise control system will serve as a crash prevention technology as well because it will comprise both Forward Collision Alert and Automatic Collision Preparation. In other words, it will monitor the road ahead and, in case of any potential collision while cruise control is enabled, it not only alerts the driver, but it also prepares him for inevitable impact.
Head Up Display will also be released, just in case you’re bored while eating a cheeseburger while “driving” and you wish to see some information on the traveling speed or any other vehicle information.
There are downsides too, unfortunately. According to Cadillac itself, it cannot work in case of bad weather or poorly visible lane markings. The system however maintains a two-second distance from the vehicle ahead and, in case of problems, it allows the driver to steer and take control of the car. Make sure you have a look at the video included in the article for a full demonstration on how the new system works.