Many new GM models have a number of innovative features that enhance the safety and convenience of the vehicle. But some of these features may be unfamiliar to customers and, as a result, they may bring their vehicle into the dealership for service when a system is actually operating as designed. Following are some of the top customer questions regarding new technology, safety and infotainment systems on some 2016-2018 GM models. Ensure customers understand the operation of these features before beginning any diagnosis or repairs.
HANDS-FREE PROGRAMMABLE POWER LIFTGATE
The programmable power liftgate (Fig 1) can be set to open to a lower height in order to make it easier to reach the liftgate to close, or to prevent contact with a low ceiling, garage door, or roof-mounted cargo.
Programming the Liftgate Height
The power liftgate knob is usually located on the driver’s door (Fig. 2) or the overhead console. It has three modes:
MAX: Opens the liftgate to the maximum height.
3/4: Opens to a reduced height that can be set from 3/4 open to fully open.
Off: Opens manually only.
To program the liftgate’s opening height:
- Turn the power liftgate knob to the MAX or 3/4 position.
- Open the liftgate and adjust it manually to the desired height.
- Save the height setting by pressing and holding the power liftgate close button next to the latch on the liftgate for three seconds. The turn signals will flash and a beep will sound when the setting is saved.
With the liftgate programmed, it will open to the set height if the power liftgate knob is in the 3/4 mode.
If the liftgate is equipped with hands-free operation, the liftgate can be opened or closed by using a kicking motion under the rear bumper. The location of the rear bumper sensor varies based on the vehicle. Do not swing your foot side-to-side. The key fob must be within 3 feet (1 meter) of the liftgate.
Some 2018 models also feature a vehicle logo that is projected onto the ground under the rear bumper sensor that indicates where the kicking motion should take place. (Fig. 3) The logo is projected when the key fob is detected within 6 feet (2 meters) of the liftgate. Based on operating conditions, the logo will be projected for one minute.
LANE KEEP ASSIST WITH LANE DEPARTURE WARNING
The customer may be expecting a warning chime when the Lane Keep Assist with Lane Departure Warning system is active. However, there is not a warning chime if the system determines the driver is actively steering.
The Lane Keep Assist system can be turned on/off using the button located on the steering wheel, center console (Fig. 4) or instrument panel. Make sure the customer has not inadvertently turned the system off.
Lane Keep Assist Function
Lane Keep Assist will provide steering input to gently turn the steering wheel to help center the vehicle in the traffic lane if the vehicle approaches a detected lane marking without using a turn signal in that direction. (Fig. 5) The Lane Keep Assist icon is green on the instrument cluster if the system is available to assist and turns amber when the system is providing steering input. As the driver actively steers the vehicle, the steering input and amber indicator may not be noticed.
Lane Departure Warning Function
If the driver does not actively steer the vehicle and crosses the lane marking without using a turn signal in that direction, the Lane Departure Warning will then provide a warning by flashing the amber icon and pulse the Safety Alert Seat or sound a chime/beeps. Audible beeps or seat pulsing alerts may be selected in the Settings menu.
AUTO ENGINE STOP/START
Many GM models now feature Auto Engine Stop/Start technology to help conserve fuel and provide better fuel economy. The Auto Engine Stop//Start system shuts down the engine when the vehicle comes to a complete stop, referred to as an Auto Stop, if operating conditions are met. When in Auto Stop mode, the tachometer will read AUTO STOP. The audio system, climate controls and other accessories will continue to operate. By releasing the brake pedal or applying the accelerator pedal, the engine will restart.
When the engine is turned off using the ignition pushbutton, the tachometer will read OFF. (Fig. 6)
The Auto Engine Stop/Start system can be turned off using a control button on some GM models. (Fig. 7)
The engine may not turn off at a stop or may restart if any of the following conditions apply:
- A minimum vehicle speed is not reached.
- The engine or transmission is not at the required operating temperature.
- The outside temperature is not in the required operating range.
- The shift lever is in any gear other than Drive (D).
- The battery charge is low.
- The climate control system requires the engine to run based on the climate control or defog setting.
- The Auto Stop time is greater than two minutes.
The new touchscreen infotainment systems (Fig. 8) offer a variety of entertainment, communication and vehicle system options. Simple gestures can be used on many of the touchscreen systems just as on a tablet, such as tap, drag, swipe and pinch/spread. Touching an application icon or screen button accesses that feature, menu or setting.
Customers can use a Bluetooth or USB connection to link to a compatible smartphone, cell phone, USB flash drive, or portable audio player.
Detailed information and Frequently Asked Questions on how to use a variety of system functions are covered at the following websites:
In Canada, visit chevrolet.ca/owner-centre.html or fr.chevrolet.ca/owner-centre.html.
In addition, helpful videos and more information about the operation of many features on new GM models can be found at the following GM owner websites:
Choose your vehicle using the drop-down menus and select Learn About Your Vehicle.
– Thanks to Tyler Greenhill