Autonomous Car

New Cadillac Commercial Pokes Fun At Tesla Autopilot

General Motors wants you to know you can take your hands off the wheel when using Super Cruise.

Automakers taking pot shots at each other is nothing new, but Tesla's dominance in the EV market makes the company an easy target. Hyundai recently trolled Tesla with a billboard advertising the new electric Kona SUV with a simple message that read, “Your turn, Elon,” directed at Tesla’s CEO Elon Musk. Audi used a similar tactic when advertising the upcoming e-Tron Sportback, describing it as a “Musk-have.” Cadillac is the latest automaker to release a Tesla-baiting advertisement, though this one is more subtle than Hyundai's.

In a new commercial promoting Cadillac’s Super Cruise driver-assistance system, a CT6 is shown cruising down the highway passing a Nissan and Tesla Model S, which are both available with semi-autonomous driving systems. Tesla’s Autopilot is one of the best autonomous driving systems in its class, but it’s attracted competition as automakers continue pushing the technology.

General Motors’ Super Cruise is a surprisingly good alternative that works well when cruising on a highway. Unlike Nissan’s ProPilot system and Tesla’s Autopilot, drivers using Super Cruise can take their hands off the wheel thanks to real-time cameras, sensors, and GPS that monitors your position, though it still requires the driver to be attentive. A driver attention system alerts the driver if they look away from the road for an extended period using cameras that monitor head movement. If the driver continues to be inattentive, the system will steer the car safely while setting off a series of alerts until the driver resumes control.

If this fails, the CT6 comes to a controlled stop and contacts OnStar in case of a medical emergency. It’s a feature that GM is keen to highlight in the video as “the world’s first true hands-free driving system for the freeway.” Well played, Cadillac. It’s a fun little dig at its rivals, but on a more serious note, more competition for Tesla can only be a good thing, hopefully resulting in safer and more affordable autonomous technology. Equipping a CT6 Premium Luxury trim with Super Cruise will set you back $5,000, but the technology comes as standard in the range-topping CT6 Platinum.

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