Pairing adaptive cruise control with lane-centering technology, it will allow drivers, or whatever they're called in the future, to let the car take over only on the highway. It will also, if all goes according to plan, propel GM into a multibillion-dollar race for the future of human mobility.
The question is whether GM can get to the future on time. Super Cruise won’t hit the market until 2017. Elon Musk has just begun offering autopilot on his Tesla Model S. Mercedes-Benz, BMW, Audi and Volvo have similar hands-free driving systems in the works. Then there’s Google, which wants to skip the half-measures and do a full-on moonshot: totally autonomous cars that, regulators willing, won’t even come with a steering wheel or gas pedal. Google’s latest prototypes are already driving themselves around Silicon Valley, where they’re known as Koala cars because of their bulbous shape, and they may be available for purchase right around the time GM’s hands-free Caddy hits showrooms.
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