Special Report: Cars getting closer to autonomous at the Chicago Auto Show

Special Report: Cars getting closer to autonomous at the Chicago Auto Show

MILWAUKEE (CBS 58) -- The Milwaukee Auto Show at the Wisconsin Center is two weeks away. The Chicago Auto Show, one of the biggest in the country, starts on Saturday,

This year's show features some cars on the market right now that are in the 2-getting close to-3 range on the Society of Automotive Engineers' (SAE) autonomy scale. A 5 is a completely autonomous car.

The 70-plus thousand dollar Cadillac CT6 debuted in the fall of 2017 with what the automaker calls "Super Cruise."

"We combined some exclusive technology including a LiDAR-based map database and our driver attention system so that when you're on a divided limited access freeway that we've mapped, you can take your hands off the wheel and your feet off the pedal," said Donny Nordilcht with Cadillac.

Even though your hands would be off the wheel, you still need to be paying attention.

"That little camera you see there is our driver attention system." said Nordlicht, referring to small black camera on the steering column. "It looks for your eye position and your head movement to make sure the driver is always paying attention to the road and supervising the vehicle."

So on your commute this week, on I-94 or I-43, there could have been someone driving next to you, hands-free. Although not on our snowier days, Cadillac's Super Cruise does not work in bad weather conditions. 

At a lower price point, you can find some autonomous functions in the new 2018 versions of the Nissan Leaf and Nissan Rogue, both come in the mid to upper $30,000 range.

With Nissan's Pro Pilot assist, drivers keep their hands on the wheel but the car will brake and accelerate on its own and if conditions are good and clear, it can keep the vehicle in the middle of the lane on an open highway. 

"It's technology usually reserved for the very expensive luxury cars but at Nissan, we're more interested in bringing it to the masses," said William Mattiace with Nissan.

The Chicago Auto Show runs from February 10 until the 19th. Many of the same displays, including the Cadillac, will be in Milwaukee just 5 days later. 

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