GM, Google exploring ways to use AI across automaker’s business

The GM logo is seen on the facade of the General Motors headquarters in Detroit, Michigan, March 16, 2021.

Rebecca Cook | Reuters

DETROIT – General Motors is working with Google to explore opportunities to implement AI technologies across the automaker’s business, the companies announced Tuesday.

The broad partnership around generative, or conversational, AI between the Detroit automaker and Google Cloud unit expands upon previous work between the two companies on GM’s OnStar Interactive Virtual Assistant (IVA) that launched in 2022.

The IVA system is powered by “intent-recognition algorithms” that use Google Cloud’s conversational AI technologies, providing OnStar users with responses to common inquiries, as well as routing and navigation assistance, GM said Tuesday.

Similar to other industries, the potential applications of artificial intelligence, including the well-known ChatGPT, have emerged as a growing discussion in the automotive industry. Some use cases could include vehicle validation, software and in-car assistance such as the OnStar service.

“Generative AI has the potential to revolutionize the buying, ownership, and interaction experience inside the vehicle and beyond, enabling more opportunities to deliver new features and services,” said Mike Abbott, a former Apple executive and GM’s executive vice president of software and services, in a statement.

GM previously said it was exploring uses for ChatGPT as part of its broader collaboration with Microsoft.

Mercedes-Benz earlier this year also announced a partnership to test in-car ChatGPT artificial intelligence in more than 900,000 vehicles in the U.S. The German luxury automaker said the emerging technology will be used for audio requests through its Hey Mercedes voice assistant, which is expected to greatly expand the system’s capabilities.

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