Integrated into the front grille of the Cadillac CT6 is a surveillance camera that the driver can secretly activate.
There’s one on the rear trunk lid, too.
If the alarm system is triggered, these two cameras activate, and two others on the door-mounted rearview mirrors do as well.
Footage is stored on a removable SD card in the trunk.Cadillac
When Ars first saw the new Cadillac CT6 at the New York International Auto Show last year, we remarked that it “may well be the company’s most convincing home-grown rival to the mighty German super-sedans like Audi’s A8, BMW’s 7-Series, and Mercedes-Benz’s S-Class.” But one feature we missed was that the $53,000-plus machine doubles as surround-view, gas-powered camcorder on wheels.
Sure, vehicles like police cars have dash cams, and there was even a valet cam in the 2015 Corvette.
But the Cadillac CT6 has four cameras secretly offering surround-view video-recording outside the vehicle.
It’s an industry first and a new source for capturing YouTube moments, scenic drives, or even other affairs like police stops.
“Cadillac expects the surround-vision video recording system to be used by CT6 owners to record events such as a memorable drive, for security in the case of a vehicle being tampered with, or to record an incident,” General Motors said of the feature.
According to the automaker, here’s how it works:
The CT6 utilizes four of the vehicles’ seven exterior cameras to provide recorded video of the CT6’s surroundings.
The cameras are strategically placed without compromising the sculpted exterior—one in each door-mounted rearview mirror, one integrated into the front grille and one mounted on the rear trunk lid. When the video recording system is activated, the cameras can capture video in one of two modes: using the front and rear cameras during vehicle operation or using all four cameras in a round-robin fashion when the vehicle security system is armed.
The latter mode will only record video once the CT6 has been disturbed.
The same cameras are also used to provide a 360-degree display around the vehicle on the CUE screen to aid in vehicle maneuvering.
Cadillac said the non-HD footage is stored on an a removable 32-gig SD card in the trunk, allowing for around 32 hours of filming. On a good day of visibility, the cameras can record several hundred feet away.
The system does not capture audio.
Internally, the automaker is debating the future of this technology. “It’s definitively something I know all of our engineering and product planning teams are talking about,” Donny Nordlicht, a Cadillac spokesman, told Ars in a telephone interview.
Nordlicht said the video-recording feature has been in the vehicles since they hit the market earlier this year, but Cadillac just began hyping the filming technology days ago as part of its marketing strategy. “We’re just sort of going piece by piece talking about features of the car,” he said.