Heated seats are one of the most popular features in today’s vehicles. In fact, according to a survey by AutoPacific, heated seats are the No. 1 most-demanded feature for car consumers. I mean, who doesn’t love a warmed-up seat during this time of year when the weather has a nip? However, according to a letter sent to dealers, and as first reported by Automotive News, General Motors will stop putting this feature in many of its SUVs and trucks.
The reason cited in the letter is related to the ongoing microchip shortage. Like most automakers, these chips are hard to come by in the needed amounts so sacrifices have to be made. So, GM’s newest sacrifice is heated seats. Previously the automaker has done away with HD radio, fuel economy and auto stop/start.
According to the letter sent to GM dealers, the decision to stop producing heated seats in some vehicles begins as early as next week and will impact GM vehicles built this year for the 2022 model year. The halt is until further notice.
When we asked for clarification, a GM spokesperson wouldn’t expound further on how long this will last. But what we do know is that the GM vehicles impacted include most of the SUV product line and some of the pickup trucks. Vehicles impacted are the Chevy Colorado, Blazer, Equinox and Traverse as well as the GMC Canyon, Terrain and Acadia. Additionally it appears that the heated seats will be eliminated from most Chevy Silverados except the High Country trim and most GMC Sierras excluding the Denali.
Features such as heated steering wheels and ventilated seats will also be impacted.
Not having one of the most popular options will impact sales — just how much remains to be seen. The elimination of heated seats could last just a short time or drag on through the entire 2022 model year. If it goes on too long, there will surely be a negative hit to GM’s profits as a result.
GM will compensate affected customers with a credit ranging from $150-$500. Also, it is certainly possible that vehicles bought without these features could be retrofitted once the parts become available. This will likely be the best-case scenario for impacted customers.
It’s not all bad news for GM as the automaker has begun including previously eliminated features that were impacted by the chip shortage including digital temperature displays, blind spot monitors and Super Cruise. Likewise, GM has returned to normal production schedules after some stoppages earlier this year, so some of the inventory shortage could be alleviated, albeit without some popular features.
GM is taking a major risk here by choosing to eliminate the consumers’ most sought-after feature. It’s a risky decision. The brand loyalists will still buy that Chevy or GM vehicle. But those who aren’t brand loyal may seek other vehicle options with heated seats.
And honestly, I can’t say I blame them. Heated seats are a must-have for me. Heck, that heated steering wheel is great this time of year, too.
Would not having heated seats keep you from buying a new vehicle? Leave me your comment below.
I hate heated seats to the point I unplugged the passenger side one in my wife’s car, but this is a major mistake for Gzm.
People will buy something else instead.
Why didn’t GM do something smarter like discontinue heater mirrors?
We live in North Dakota and having heated seats and wheel are amazing. We currently have a Chevrolet Traverse on order and it is scheduled to be built in the next couple of weeks. If it arrives at the dealer without the option we will walk away and get something different. Do I need them? No, but who wants to pay 50k+ for a vehicle and not get something as simple as heated seats. I am also concerned about it being a black sheep and loosing resale value.
This will be terrible for people who purposely paid thousands extra for a trim level to get the heated seats and wheel. From a Silverado standpoint there are plenty of folks who cringe at the styling differences between and LTZ and High Country and may have chosen to option and an LTZ to HC spec – now to not receive these features when their order comes in. I’ll admit I jumped ship from GM a month ago over their package limitations and forcing expensive and unwanted options at the consumer to get basic features. This is a total dealbreaker for a lot of people. Maybe Ford will do the same and I’ll receive my order without the seats and wheel I paid for. I figure it will cost upwards of $5K to retrofit the wheel, seats, HVAC module and programming using parts from a wrecker and over $10K through a dealership. They’re offering up to $500 in compensation?
Was eyeing a Sierra AT4 but I’m getting sick of the constant neutering of these options. If you want 60k + for a truck do it right. These truck lines are their bread and butter, if you want top dollar than build top dollar…I hope they can take the hit.
They just released information that states the heated seats will be installed later this year in 2022 models purchased with the appropriate trim level but without the heated seats. What physically has to be installed? Only a chip? The whole seat? Nobody is saying. We just got our 2022 Terrain home (after ordering it last October and having a horrible buying experience with Young Buick GMC in Layton Utah) and are wondering how long it will take a dealer to perform the work.