Cadillac Changes Its Super Cruise Strategy, Commences Media Campaign Prior to Launch

Matt Posky
by Matt Posky
cadillac changes its super cruise strategy commences media campaign prior to launch

Setbacks notwithstanding, we’ve been eagerly anticipating Cadillac’s entry into the world of semi-autonomous driving with its Super Cruise system, developed to help reinforce the automaker’s position as top-tier luxury brand. After all, vehicular opulence is now deeply embedded with technological achievement and few things shout “I’ve arrived” like a car that can chauffeur you around.

However, Cadillac is changing its implementation strategy, making Super Cruise standard on the highest trimmed CT6 — instead of leaving it as a pricy optional extra. It’s also launching an advertising campaign to whet the public’s appetite, with the first of its “Let Go” TV spots appearing on MTV’s Video Music Awards over the weekend.

Since I’m not a 16-year-old, I wasn’t watching the VMAs. But the digital wonderland in we currently exist made the 30-second spot easy enough to find. It’s boilerplate automotive marketing nonsense — conflating a change in lifestyle with the purchase of a specific type of car.

The majority of it focuses on individuals achieving important lifelong goals with unrelated clips of a gentleman enjoying hands-free driving.

In fairness, other early ads in the campaign are much easier to swallow. There’s one where the driver uses Super Cruise to engage in sign-language with his passenger — utilizing the technology in a way I had not previously considered. But how good or bad the commercials were don’t really matter as much as the system itself.

For the most part, is seems great and baking it into plusher versions of the 2018 CT6 sounds like a fine idea. Previously, the company had suggested it would only offer the hands-off highway tech as a $2,500 option. But Automotive News reported Monday that the company has changed those plans.

A Cadillac spokesman explained the automaker is making Super Cruise a standard feature on the CT6 Platinum, which carried an initial starting price of $85,290. The feature remains an optional extra on the Premium Luxury trim. Adjusted pricing will be announced closer to the vehicles’ arrival in dealerships — part of a interim model-year addition that Cadillac calls “2018i.”

As for what the safety tech suite can actually do, Cadillac is promising a genuine hands-free highway driving experience —with literally handful of important exceptions. Super Cruise is supposedly capable of allowing you to move along the expressway in a single lane without ever having to touch the wheel.

However, you do need to regain control for passing, entering, and exiting. You also can’t play on your phone, take a nap, or crack a book. The system has sensors that monitor eye movement and won’t work if you stop paying attention to the road ahead. It may have one of the most advanced GPS systems ever installed in a motor vehicle (and LIDAR specifically designed for the CT6), but General Motors doesn’t feel comfortable enough to allow you to let your guard down entirely.

If you do, the car requests that you regain control before bringing itself to a gradual stop. “It’s been very carefully thought out from a safety standpoint,” GM product chief Mark Reuss told reporters in Detroit. “If you think about this from a pure safety standpoint, it’s really a driver load reduction.”

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  • 28-Cars-Later 28-Cars-Later on Aug 29, 2017

    V4-6-8 4100 Northstarrr 3.0 Ellesmere Port V6 Self immolating 2.0T What could possibly go wrong with Super Cruise? :D Christ on a bike just make a car that doesn't suck for once this millennium.

  • Rnaboz Rnaboz on Aug 29, 2017

    They should have left it as an option, then built ALL of them WITH the option. Well, at least for the first two model years.

  • Tassos If you only changed your series to the CORRECT "Possibly Collectible, NOT Daily Driver, NOT Used car of the day", it would sound much more accurate AND TRUTHFUL.Now who would collect THIS heap of trash for whatever misguided reason, nostalgia for a much worse automotive era or whatever, is another question.
  • ToolGuy Price dropped $500 overnight. (Wait 10 more days and you might get it for free?)
  • Slavuta Must be all planned. Increase price of cars, urbanize, 15 minutes cities. Be poor, eat bugs
  • Sid SB Not seen a Core without the performance pack yet. Prefer the more understated look of the Core vs the Circuit, but both are great fun to drive.
  • El scotto Tesla has one team making EV's because that is all Tesla does. Farley -rolls eyes- decided to split Ford into two huge warring factions: ICE vs EV. Hey Jimbo, it says "FORD" on the buildings.Lord only knows what GM did internally because it's GM. I'm betting it's like Ford pitting ICE vs EVs. With GM being GM every existing division will be divided.Stellantis will keep building Challengers and Rams. Someday they may figure out that Jeep is the fugu fish of the automotive sushi world and unload to some Chinese. EV's? no, not really.If this site was The Truth About HVAC (TTAH) some on here would tell us that central heating and air causes unknown illnesses, will be bad, and cause a degradation of our nation's moral fiber. By golly they shoveled coal and carry ash buckets and that shouldn't change.