Anyone who's ever towed a trailer knows it can be a stressful experience. Today's pickup trucks pack more than enough power to handle most loads the average buyer will be hauling — even a humble Ford Ranger can tow most Airstreams, for example — but no amount of power can fix tricky issues like backing up with a trailer, knowing what's hidden beside it or compensating for those terrifying gusts of wind on the highway.
To make life easier for those loyal buyers dropping substantial sums on do-it-all vehicles, automakers have taken to finding technological solutions to these issues. Modern trucks use tech fixes to making reversing with a trailer a snap, to check a trailer's blind spots, even to practically make the trailer invisible.
But GMC is about to take things to the next level: come the 2022 model year, the GMC Sierra 1500 Denali will be the first truck that can (kind of) drive itself on the highway while towing a trailer.
Those knowledgeable on General Motors products probably know where this is going: come next year, the Sierra Denali is set to join the ranks of GM products to feature SuperCruise, the carmaker's excellent hands-free semi-autonomous driving aid. (The system requires a driver to be constantly looking at the road and ready to take over at any moment, so it's not technically a self-driving car.)
So far, the feature — which allows a vehicle to operate without the driver touching any of the control surfaces on more than 200,000 miles of pre-mapped road in the U.S. and Canada — has only been offered on the now-discontinued Cadillac CT6, though it's set to appear on the new Escalade shortly and the CT4 and CT5 sedans soon after that. The next few years will see an explosion in the number of models featuring the system, though, with GM promising SuperCruise will land on 22 different nameplates by the end of 2023.
Until today, however, there wasn't any real indication that GM would develop a version of SuperCruise that would work when a vehicle is towing a trailer. Given how much easier SuperTow (our nickname for the towing version of SuperCruise) seems liable to make owners' lives, we're fully expecting it to diffuse across GM's portfolio to other vehicles primed for towing, such as the newest Tahoe and the upcoming GMC Hummer EV.