CES 2022: GM To Introduce Personal Autonomous Car By 2025

The CEO of GM (General Motors) Mary Barra used her speech for the annual Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, to announce the American giant’s intentions for autonomous vehicles.

General Motors, along with a number of other big names in the automotive and technology sectors, have chosen to halt or minimise their attendance at this year’s CES show.

Speaking virtually at the event, chief executive Mary Barra revealed during her keynote speech that ordinary drivers could be able to acquire a personal autonomous car from GM within the next five years.

Image credit: Cruise

Bold timeline

Mary Barra was quoted by Reuters as saying on Wednesday that General Motors aims to introduce a “personal autonomous vehicle” by mid-decade.

Barra said the self-driving vehicle for personal use is being co-developed with GM’s majority-owned Cruise.

The Origin self-driving shuttle designed by GM’s Cruise. Image credit: Cruise

Besides autonomous vehicles, Barra also talked about vehicle electrification.

She said GM’s expanding portfolio of electric vehicles, includes the 2023 Chevrolet Silverado electric pickup and the BrightDrop commercial vehicle range.

It also features two new Chevrolet crossovers, a $30,000 Equinox EV and a slightly larger Blazer EV, both of which will be introduced in 2023.

GM’s new Ultra Cruise hands-free driving system will also debut in 2023 on another new EV, the Cadillac Celestiq ultra-luxury sedan.

Barra reportedly said Ultra Cruise will use Qualcomm’s new Snapdragon Ride compute platform for advanced driver assistance.

Holy grail

Successfully delivering autonomous vehicles (instead of simpler driver assistance systems) is proving to be incredible hard for car manufacturers, as it is a hugely challenging task that requires years and years of research and testing.

In July 2020 Tesla CEO Elon Musk made a very bold prediction about the future of autonomous driving technology, when he said that Tesla is “very close” to achieving level 5 autonomous driving technology.

But the reality is that Tesla cars, even those with ‘Full Self-Driving’ beta software, are only at level 2 currently.

Level 5 is the holy grail of autonomous driving technology, as level 5 vehicles will not require human intervention, and need for a human driver is eliminated.

Indeed, it is said that level 5 cars won’t even have steering wheels or acceleration/braking pedals.

These cars will be free from geofencing, and will be able to drive anywhere, and do anything that normal car with a human driver can do.

Tom Jowitt

Tom Jowitt is a leading British tech freelancer and long standing contributor to Silicon UK. He is also a bit of a Lord of the Rings nut...

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