General Motors (GM) unveiled a new personal self-driving electric concept car from its luxury brand Cadillac on Wednesday, while the company’s CEO said she anticipates introducing a personal autonomous vehicle “as soon as the middle of the decade.”
The electric vehicle, part of Cadillac’s Halo Concept Portfolio, was revealed during the CES technology show in Las Vegas and is being co-developed with GM’s majority-owned Cruise.
GM’s two-passenger electric and autonomous luxury vehicle called InnerSpace utilizes “cutting-edge technologies designed to enhance the passenger experience along with the increased personal time enabled by fully autonomous mobility,” according to the company.
The vehicle’s fully autonomous capability means it is able to self-drive in every situation anywhere without the driver having to intervene.
Currently, no such cars exist, however Tesla does offer customers vehicles with Autopilot and Full Self-Driving Capability, which are intended for use with fully attentive drivers, who have their hands on the wheel and are prepared to take over at any moment.
“The vehicles of the Cadillac Halo Concept Portfolio are designed to provide effortless travel through extraordinary means,” said Bryan Nesbitt, GM executive director, Global Advanced Design and Global Architecture Studio. “They are visions for the next decade and beyond, showing the possibilities enabled by General Motors’s comprehensive approach to autonomous drive technology with the goal of a world with zero crashes, zero emissions, and zero congestion.”
According to GM, AI-driven biometric input and interfaces, which are accessed via an “immersive and panoramic SMD LED display,” enable passengers in the vehicle to select from “Augmented Reality Engagement, Entertainment, and Wellness Recovery themes for their drive,” creating a luxury experience.
Thanks to Ultifi, an end-to-end software platform, Cadillac engineers and authorized third parties will be able to add additional themes and features over-the-air.
Elsewhere, battery modules have been spaced out throughout the vehicle, allowing designers to optimize the cabin for “spaciousness and serenity” while also creating a sports car-like seating position.
Panoramic glass on the roof and part of the body sides also provide for almost unimpeded views while SoundComfort technology by Goodyear allows for a quiet journey. Goodyear’s tire intelligence technology also displays important information about pressure, temperature, load, and other key factors.
The vehicle’s tires even use soybean oil and rice husk-based silica instead of petroleum-based oil as the key ingredient in their construction.
“We are looking further down the road at opportunities to extend fully autonomous vehicle technology to personal transportation with the safety and quality our consumers expect and with leading-edge autonomous vehicle technology that will transform the ownership experience as we know it in pursuing multiple paths simultaneously,” GM CEO Mary Barra said Wednesday.
“GM and Cruise are gaining significant technological expertise and experience and we are working to be the fastest to market with a retail personal autonomous vehicle. In fact, we aim to deliver our first personal autonomous vehicles as soon as the middle of this decade,” Barra said.
At last year’s CES event, Cadillac introduced the first two Halo concepts: the PersonalSpace, which it says is “a single-seat, personal vertical takeoff and landing concept designed to literally move its passenger above the din and congestion of ground traffic,” and the SocialSpace, a more spacious autonomous vehicle that fits up to six passengers.