Let Automation Take the Wheel

GM’s latest acquisition will usher in new forms of self-driving cars.


Detroit’s heavy metal meets Silicon Valley software as General Motors receives regulatory approval to acquire three-year-old San Francisco-based Cruise Automation. It’s a significant union and a move that signals that the era of autonomous cars could soon be upon us.

An article in the Detroit Free Press points out that while all automotive manufacturers are engineering innovative features into future cars, this news represents one of the first acquisitions of a Silicon Valley start-up by a traditional automaker. Similar deals are likely to follow. Maybe from Ford Motor Company, which recently announced it was forming a new subsidiary called Ford Smart Mobility to build mobility services.

GM is interested in Cruise Automation’s technology that enables drivers, while on the highway, to push a button and transfer control of the accelerator, brakes and steering which work in an autonomous manner.

Of course, cars have been equipped with autonomous features for years—from automatic braking to hands-free parking. But, we are on the verge of experiencing the next generation of self-directed vehicles.

Pretty soon we may not need a license to drive at all!

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