On October 19, the Virginia Tech Transportation Institute strapped their latest automated driving technology into a Cadillac SRX, and set it loose.
Driving down the Express Lanes of I-95 in northern Virginia, this modified SRX steered, accelerated, braked and even changed lanes by itself. According to a local Fox affiliate, VTTI’s autonomous driving technology is also smart enough to automatically slow down when approaching construction work zones and move over a lane before passing police vehicles with flashers on.
Unlike other autonomous technologies on the market, VTTI’s system not only frees up the driver’s hands and feet, but the eyes as well. Virginia Tech is so confident in its technology, its engineers say that the driver can take their eyes off the road for extended periods of time without concern.
But, VTTI has no intentions to put its new tech on the market — rather act as a development tool for OEMs, like General Motors. Notably, GM has been testing its Super Cruise technology in Cadillac SRX development vehicles for a few years now, and has partnered with Carnegie Mellon in the efforts. GM also announced that it will utilize a fleet of special Chevrolet Volts equipped with autonomous driving technology to shuttle employees around the Warren Tech Center campus.
Expect Super Cruise to be featured on both the 2017 Cadillac CT6 and 2017 Cadillac CTS. There is hope that we may see the all-new 2017 Cadillac XT5 crossover with Super Cruise as well, though that has yet to be confirmed.
Much like Virginia Tech’s system, Super Cruise will handle steering, braking and accelerating on certain driving conditions. But, it may be a while before we see a fully autonomous Cadillac roaming the streets.