CARS.COM — Cadillac has announced that a revamped new generation of its Cadillac User Experience infotainment system will begin rolling out by the end of March in the CTS sedan. While the new CUE system adds some new features and personalization capabilities, it also aims to make using the system more intuitive — and to address frustrations users have had with the current CUE that first appeared in the XTS sedan, including response time and complexity in performing basic tasks.
Cadillac says the new system offers “easier access to the most common features,” including a new summary view that displays most-used applications — such as phone, audio, climate and navigation — all on one screen.
“We have worked to improve overall system response in recent years, and now this next-generation user experience system delivers more improvements, focused mainly on intuitive control,” said Richard Brekus, Cadillac director of product strategy, in a statement.
Not part of that intuitive control is a return to old-school knobs. Unlike Honda and Ford, who have responded to customer feedback on their touch systems by bringing back some simple physical controls, such as a volume knob, the Cadillac system continues to emphasize touch and gesture control as well as voice control.
The revamped system will be added next to 2018 models of the XTS and ATS sedans, Cadillac said, and go into other model lines “in future model years.” The new system will continue to offer Apple CarPlay and Android Auto smartphone integration that offer alternatives for many infotainment and navigation functions.
Like many other automakers, Cadillac has taken some hits in quality surveys over operation of its infotainment and control system. Complaints about such systems rose to 22 percent of all reported problems in the 2017 J.D. Power Dependability Study, up from 20 percent in 2016. And Cadillac’s current system ranked at the bottom of a Consumer Reports brand-by-brand survey of its subscribers’ satisfaction with such systems at 40 percent “very satisfied” versus a top satisfaction rating of 70 percent for the latest Uconnect 8.4 system from Fiat Chrysler Automobiles. More telling for Cadillac, perhaps, is that CUE also lagged the 57 percent satisfaction score for the MyLink/IntelliLink systems used by GM’s other brands.
Beyond improved usability, Cadillac said the new system will offer:
- The capability to create cloud-based personal driver profiles for vehicle and display settings and other individual preferences; the user can manage the profile in the vehicle or via the web and carry it into other Cadillac vehicles.
- A new navigation app with more smartphone-like operation.
- An opt-in connection that allows Cadillac to remotely update navigation and other apps.