GM Binning heated seats and steering wheel on select models

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While this news first surfaced late on Friday, we believe it’s a significant move by General Motors, one that deserves some discussion even after countless different auto blogs parroted this news over the weekend.

In question? The current level of disruption in the global supply chain, of course. With the only fries in Detroit apparently being the salt and vinegar type, automakers have been forced to make some tough decisions, but getting heated seats is a very substantial change.

Until now, the types of features that have disappeared from new vehicles due to the global chip shortage have been relatively minor or, ironically, have served to trash features that weren’t that popular at first (we’re looking at you, maddeningly. start / stop on GM 5.3L V8 engines). Staying true to The General, customers have seen temperature displays on the dial fade, wireless charging go AWOL, and the aforementioned start / stop systems cease to be a problem for the commuting experience. Some of these disaffected paid off with a lesser credit on the vehicle’s recommended price, such as a $ 50 token for the lack of start / stop.

But bickering over heated seats is child’s play. It’s one thing to remove the handy digital temperature readout that resides in the center of the HVAC dials on vehicles like the Silverado and Sierra. Rather, it is something else to rule out the inclusion of heated seats, a feature that is anecdotally considered a headache by large swathes of consumers. Not being able to have coat warmers on board your gear while driving at 5:30 am, hockey is not popular in some corners of the country.

Here is a list of affected vehicles, compiled by professionals from The Detroit News.

  • Chevrolet:
    • Malibu: LT, Premier
    • Pioneer: LT, ACTIV, RS
    • Blazer: LT, RS, Premier
    • Equinox: LT, RS, Premier
    • Traverse: 1LT, 3LT, RS, Premier, High Country (rear heat only)
    • Colorado: LT, Z71, ZR2
    • Silverado 1500: LT, RST, LT Trailboss, ZTL
    • Silverado 2500/3500: LT, ZTL
  • GMC:
    • Canyon: Elevation, AT4, Denali
    • Terrain: SLE, SLT, AT4, Denali
    • Acadia: SLE, SLT, AT4, Denali (rear heat only)
    • Sierra 1500 Limited: SLE, Elevation, SLT, AT4
    • Sierra 2500/3500: SLE, SLT, AT4
  • Blinds:
    • Encore GX: Preferred, Select, Essence
    • Envision: Preferred, Essence, Avenir
    • Enclave: Premium, Avenir (rear heat only)
  • Cadillac:
    • XT4: Luxury, Premium Luxury, Sport
    • XT5: Luxury, Premium, Sport (rear heat only)
    • XT6: Luxury, Premium, Sport (rear heat only)

That’s, um, a lot of vehicles, including some of their best-sellers. Which, of course, begs the question: Will GM have the foresight to ship these vehicles to markets where heated seats aren’t a so-called headache? It could be a big deal if the trucks on dealership lots in Phoenix don’t have heated seats compared to those sold in Nebraska. Given the lack of products available, however, it’s a safe assumption that retailers in all corners of the country will simply take what they can get – heated seats or not.

Plus, you can bet your lowest GM isn’t pulling the actual buttons for this function from the dashboards – those switches are too well integrated to be carried by the affected vehicles as they roll down the assembly line. It is simply (and understandably) too much work. Same goes for the heated steering wheels. Here is a list of rigs, again from The Detroit News.

  • Chevrolet:
    • Bolt EV: 1LT, 2LT
    • Bolt EUV: LT, Premier
    • Jacket: RS, Premier
    • Traverse: 3LT, RS, Premier
    • Pioneer: LT, ACTIV, RS
    • Silverado 1500 LTD: LT, RST, LT Trailboss, ZTL
    • Silverado 2500/3500 HD: LT, ZTL
    • Suburban and Tahoe: LT, RST, Z71, Premier
  • GMC:
    • Acadia: SLE, SLT, AT4
    • Sierra 1500 Limited: SLE, Elevation, SLT, AT4
    • Sierra 2500/3500: SLE, SLT, AT4
    • Yukon and Yukon XL: SLT, AT4
  • Blinds:
    • Encore GX: Essence
    • Envision: Essence, Avenir
    • Enclave: Essence, Premium
  • Cadillac:
    • CT4 and CT5: Luxury, Premium Luxury, Sport, V Series
    • XT4: Luxury, Premium Luxury, Sport
    • XT5 and XT6: Luxury, Premium without JSE Platinum package, Sport without JSE Platinum package

This is another significant list of popular vehicles. Like heated seat switches, GM is highly unlikely to replace a steering wheel without the button that controls its heating function. This brings us to an interesting observation that is sure to cause used-car operators headaches in three to five years: just because a vehicle has the controls for a particular function doesn’t mean it’s actually equipped. Flash forward to angry customers returning in the dead of winter complaining that their heated seats don’t work, or the frustration of an overworked technician trying to diagnose a problem that doesn’t exist. And yes, all of these vehicles will have these omissions noted on their Monroney and in the depths of GM’s computer system.Your author has worked hard at dealerships for enough years to know that it is highly unlikely that any of these tools will be used during the sale. of a four-year-old pioneer in a used car park.

However, in the current climate, you can bet there will be plenty of sales teams happy to see the vehicles under construction, heated seats or not.

[Images: GM]

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