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GM's Super Cruise Is Your Towing Cheat Code

The only hands-free system with towing support proves highly capable

2024 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 profile
  • If you want to tow hands-free, GM's Super Cruise is the only game in town.
  • We came away impressed after testing it on a busy Los Angeles.
  • Super Cruise system now works on 750,000 miles of mapped roadways, far and away the most of all the hands-free systems.

Look, we've been down this road before: GM's Super Cruise is great. It won our (almost) self-driving comparison test, defeating the likes of Ford's BlueCruise, BMW's Highway Assistant and Tesla's Full Self-Driving Beta (which we included even though it isn't hands-free). On top of that, Super Cruise also has a trick up its sleeve that none of the other hands-free systems can match: It can tow. I hopped into a Super Cruise-equipped 2024 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 High Country pulling a box trailer to test the system on traffic-soaked Los Angeles highways.

2024 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 technology

Super Cruise towing parameters

The system uses the same operating conditions that Super Cruise requires when not towing: You must be on a divided highway that has been premapped by GM. The automaker also recently announced that its network of mapped roadways on which Super Cruise can be used has been expanded to about 750,000 miles in the United States and Canada by adding more minor highways, giving it the best coverage of any hands-free system.

With a trailer, the system still works from a stop to well over legal speeds, though on our test drive we didn't push it past 55 mph. Turning the system on is simple. You activate adaptive cruise control via a button on the steering wheel, and if you're on one of the Super Cruise-enabled roads (and other conditions are met), the system activates automatically. Green lights appear on the steering wheel and green icons illuminate in the instrument cluster to let you know that you can let your hands relax. A driver monitoring camera ensures that the system will only remain active if the driver is paying attention to the road ahead.

What you lose in the bargain are the auto lane change capabilities. If you bump the turn signal stalk while towing, you'll have to execute the lane change yourself (though the vehicle will maintain speed). It also won't change lanes automatically if another lane of traffic is moving more freely. We found that second feature too aggressive in our testing, so you're not missing much if you disable it from the get-go.

The following distances are elongated to account for the extra weight of the trailer, and it slows down earlier for curves that it knows are coming based on the map data. And if the vehicle senses that the attached trailer is over capacity, the system will limit Super Cruise functionality even further.

Super Cruise = super chill

Our drive route took us straight onto the freeway and I activated the system as soon as I merged onto the 105. I set Super Cruise to 55 mph and the truck immediately obeyed, smoothly adding power until we were cruising (heh) at the given speed. The truck and trailer lane positioning were dead center; I checked the mirrors constantly for the first few minutes to make sure all eight wheels were staying within the lines. After a few minutes I forgot to keep looking because it was working so flawlessly.

Los Angeles traffic is usually the bane of our existence, but in this case, it allowed me to see how the system would handle slowing down and starting up again from a stop. Those tasks were also handled with a great deal of boredom. I wouldn't say that I was hoping for drama, but I wouldn't have minded a little bit being thrown my way, you know? The adaptive cruise function kept plenty of space between me and the vehicle in front; even in its shortest setting, I still felt the truck and trailer had plenty of room to slow down. The system also handled us being cut off with aplomb, slightly dabbing the brakes but not panic stopping or jerking the wheel to the side.

In fact, the hardest part of the drive was finding a freeway exit that was good to turn around and head back west toward the beach where we started.

2024 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 techology

What vehicles can tow with Super Cruise?

If you're interested in hands-free towing, the following GM vehicles offer the capability. But remember, the system requires a subscription and is generally only found on higher trim levels or via an options package (or two).

  • Cadillac
    • Escalade, Lyriq, XT6
  • Chevy
    • Silverado, Suburban, Tahoe
  • GMC
    • Hummer EV SUV, Hummer EV, Sierra, Yukon

Edmunds says

Super Cruise is already our favorite hands-free system, and the unique towing feature cements that judgment even further. Towing can be a fatiguing exercise for the driver and any technology that can make it easier is a welcome addition.