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AutoBlog: REPORT: Ford preparing cops for life after Crown Vic, has police sample Taurus

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Filed under: Sedan, Government/Legal, Ford, Specialty

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Quick quiz: What vehicle transported Paris Hilton to prison? If you answered Ford's Crown Victoria Police Interceptor, you took the easy route and you were correct. The older than thou Crown Vic accounts for about 85% of the 75,000 police vehicles sold each year - a market where styling, amenities and new safety features have little to do with the vehicle's success.

The CV's body-on-frame construction helps the ubiquitous cop cruiser stand up to the punishment doled out by the guys and gals in blue. Body-on-frame platforms are generally also easier to repair, and anyone who has been in a police parking lot can plainly see that these vehicles take a big-time beating in the name of public safety. The CV is also rear-wheel drive for better handling, it's large enough to fit even the biggest of felons (and cops), and its column-mounted shifter enables the fuzz to have plenty of room for a laptop. But alas, the Crown Vic is also older than dirt. We'd joke that Henry Ford himself had a hand in the creation of the CV, but chances are that Henry II actually did, and he retired as the head of the Blue Oval when Pong was state-of-the-art video gaming technology.

According to The Detroit News, in June, Ford hosted police personnel from some of America's biggest cities to discuss the future of the police cruiser. The Dearborn, MI-based automaker told the police departments that the Crown Vic would be gone by 2011. That's bad news for departments like the LAPD, which has a shop set up specifically to deal with the CV. Some police departments told the Motown newspaper that rear-drive vehicles like the Charger can't hold up to the abuse of police work. Others are looking into the Impala, though the front-drive Chevy hasn't gained much traction with law enforcement. One ray of hope could come in the form of the Carbon Motors E7 purpose built police cruiser, but it isn't quite ready for prime time yet, and it's likely to be significantly more expensive than the equivalent Blue Oval cruiser.

Ford is in a bit of a predicament in that the Crown Vic has the police (and cab) market to itself and, as Ford President Mark Fields points out to The Detroit News, the CV gives Ford a presence in just about every municipality in America. One vehicle that Ford gave to police to drive during their stay in Dearborn was the new Taurus, which is almost as big and roomy as the CV, but with far more safety tech, improved fuel economy and the (costly) option of an Ecoboost V6 under the hood in the form of the SHO model. The Taurus may not be the ultimate answer (at least it won't be outrun by a Toyota Camry or Nissan Altima), but Ford insists that it isn't giving up its police share without a fight.

[source: Detroit News]

REPORT: Ford preparing cops for life after Crown Vic, has police sample Taurus originally appeared on Autoblog on Fri, 28 Aug 2009 11:30:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Sometimes I wonder why some 3rd party didn't make a bed replacement for the F150 (or the F100, if it returns) that incorporates a prisoner transport area and some closed storage. Something light and aerodynamic, but still separate from the rest of the vehicle for easy replacement if it gets damaged. There would be no need for a barrier for the driver and the light bar could be integrated into the unit, instead of needed to bolt a separate light bar onto the roof. Drop the suspension and give it a hot engine... perfect cop "car".

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What we need here is a corporation large enough to have multiple brands so the costs of such a vehicle could be spread out. There could be a heavy duty sedan chassis used for police and taxi duty, maybe make a plain jane civilian model for people who need size on the cheap.

A wagon should be offered too, preferably large enough to swallow a 4x8 sheet of plywood if need be. Imagine what it could do to the SUV market.

For the muscle heads in here offer a sport version with the cop bits and high output engine.

Then offer the vehicle at another brand to mid-lux customers who are more concerned with comfort than sport, but let it be able to tow a good size trailer.

Finally, since the platform is likely to be very robust, use it as a flagship in a full-lux model. Use a lengthened frame for added luxury.

If only there were a company out there to think up something like this....

oh....

wait.......

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GM missed the boat on Zeta. I could have been a great Impala if designed for the USA like the Camaro is. And the 304 hp V6 is enough for the Impala and a Police car. The Crown Vic only has 239 hp, and 287 lb-ft which isn't bad torque. The Ute/pickup I don't think would sell here.

The Carbon Motors police car looks like it will be the way to go. They are diesel which last longer and get better mileage, it has a 0-60 time under 7 seconds I believe. And the car is designed to be a police car, with a dash that has all the computer equipment built in, rather than thrown on top. It does make more sense to design a purpose built police car than to retrofit a family sedan to be one.

Funny though how the 3.5 liter V6 Ford Police car will make 125 more horsepower than the 4.6 liter V8 car. This is what hurt American cars for years, dated, low tech engines, platforms and transmissions. Finally they are catching up, but it could be too late.

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Sometimes I wonder why some 3rd party didn't make a bed replacement for the F150 (or the F100, if it returns) that incorporates a prisoner transport area and some closed storage. Something light and aerodynamic, but still separate from the rest of the vehicle for easy replacement if it gets damaged. There would be no need for a barrier for the driver and the light bar could be integrated into the unit, instead of needed to bolt a separate light bar onto the roof. Drop the suspension and give it a hot engine... perfect cop "car".

They could use something like the dog catcher (animal control services) special bodies I've seen on pickups, but with larger cages to stuff prisoners in.

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The Carbon Motors police car looks like it will be the way to go. They are diesel which last longer and get better mileage, it has a 0-60 time under 7 seconds I believe. And the car is designed to be a police car, with a dash that has all the computer equipment built in, rather than thrown on top. It does make more sense to design a purpose built police car than to retrofit a family sedan to be one.

One problem with this, though--sounds like the Carbon Motors car will be so expensive, very few departments will be able to afford one..

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GM missed the boat on Zeta. I could have been a great Impala if designed for the USA like the Camaro is. And the 304 hp V6 is enough for the Impala and a Police car. The Crown Vic only has 239 hp, and 287 lb-ft which isn't bad torque. The Ute/pickup I don't think would sell here.

The Carbon Motors police car looks like it will be the way to go. They are diesel which last longer and get better mileage, it has a 0-60 time under 7 seconds I believe. And the car is designed to be a police car, with a dash that has all the computer equipment built in, rather than thrown on top. It does make more sense to design a purpose built police car than to retrofit a family sedan to be one.

Funny though how the 3.5 liter V6 Ford Police car will make 125 more horsepower than the 4.6 liter V8 car. This is what hurt American cars for years, dated, low tech engines, platforms and transmissions. Finally they are catching up, but it could be too late.

If the LX Charger, which is a fairly beefy unibody platform, isn't holding up to police duty as it is stated in the article, I wonder how well the Zeta would be able to hold up.

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Ford just needs to keep building the car.

I don't understand how this would be any different than any other company making government only vehicles like international, AM General, and others do.

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If the LX Charger, which is a fairly beefy unibody platform, isn't holding up to police duty as it is stated in the article, I wonder how well the Zeta would be able to hold up.

For beefy BOF police cars, I see a lot of Tahoes (city of Phoenix, AZ state police/DPS) and Expeditions (the notorious Maricopa County Sherriff's office) around here...

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If the LX Charger, which is a fairly beefy unibody platform, isn't holding up to police duty as it is stated in the article, I wonder how well the Zeta would be able to hold up.

Zeta would be better than the Impala no doubt. Police cars most of the time are parked or going under 30 mph around town. It isn't like police departments value acceleration, braking or handling. Look at the Impala and Crown Vic cop cars with their 9 second 0-60 times and 130 mph top speed, and poor handling. Not to mention the Crown Vic's 17 mpg or so. The Crown Vic is a terrible car, it isn't even fit for civilian use anymore, why should the Police use it.

The Carbon Motors car may cost a lot whenever they announce pricing, but it will be cheaper to operate, so departments will have to factor that in.

Chevy should make a Camaro Police package for highway patrols, they used to.

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What we need here is a corporation large enough to have multiple brands so the costs of such a vehicle could be spread out. There could be a heavy duty sedan chassis used for police and taxi duty, maybe make a plain jane civilian model for people who need size on the cheap.

A wagon should be offered too, preferably large enough to swallow a 4x8 sheet of plywood if need be. Imagine what it could do to the SUV market.

For the muscle heads in here offer a sport version with the cop bits and high output engine.

Then offer the vehicle at another brand to mid-lux customers who are more concerned with comfort than sport, but let it be able to tow a good size trailer.

Finally, since the platform is likely to be very robust, use it as a flagship in a full-lux model. Use a lengthened frame for added luxury.

If only there were a company out there to think up something like this....

oh....

wait.......

There was .... it was called "Checker". ..... and they used Chevy engines, sometimes! The governor of Ill., Jim Thompson had one as his personal car, because of his size!

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If the LX Charger, which is a fairly beefy unibody platform, isn't holding up to police duty as it is stated in the article, I wonder how well the Zeta would be able to hold up.

I would like to know who the pundit is, who says that the Charger is not holding up?

FYI: Do you all know why the Impala 9C1s have the V-6 instead of the V-8?

The V-8's could not pass the Michigan State Police parked-up-to-a-brick-wall test. The V-8 cars overheated! The V-6's passed!

The LT1 Caprice 9C1's with their reverse-flow cooling systems passed this test with ease!

But we got ------ progress!.... and lost the business.

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Ford just needs to keep building the car.

I don't understand how this would be any different than any other company making government only vehicles like international, AM General, and others do.

It goes to a little six-letter word: ----- profit!

That is why the General stopped making 9C1 Caprices at the Arlington plant and switched

its production there to SUVs! The profit went from $2K/vehicle to $5K/vehicle!

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Sometimes I wonder why some 3rd party didn't make a bed replacement for the F150 (or the F100, if it returns) that incorporates a prisoner transport area and some closed storage. Something light and aerodynamic, but still separate from the rest of the vehicle for easy replacement if it gets damaged. There would be no need for a barrier for the driver and the light bar could be integrated into the unit, instead of needed to bolt a separate light bar onto the roof. Drop the suspension and give it a hot engine... perfect cop "car".

Well GM did, in a way. It created the Tahoe police package off of the Tahoe SS, which has a lot

of the features you are requesting!

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Well GM did, in a way. It created the Tahoe police package off of the Tahoe SS, which has a lot

of the features you are requesting!

The police trucks used around here have been too tall and kinda heavy. If the Tahoe was brought down to '60's passenger car height, it would work well... and the rear section could be fiberglass.

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What we need here is a corporation large enough to have multiple brands so the costs of such a vehicle could be spread out. There could be a heavy duty sedan chassis used for police and taxi duty, maybe make a plain jane civilian model for people who need size on the cheap.

A wagon should be offered too, preferably large enough to swallow a 4x8 sheet of plywood if need be. Imagine what it could do to the SUV market.

For the muscle heads in here offer a sport version with the cop bits and high output engine.

Then offer the vehicle at another brand to mid-lux customers who are more concerned with comfort than sport, but let it be able to tow a good size trailer.

Finally, since the platform is likely to be very robust, use it as a flagship in a full-lux model. Use a lengthened frame for added luxury.

If only there were a company out there to think up something like this....

oh....

wait.......

What should have been...

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i remember the local police department got the intrepids for use... many many headgaskets and transmissions later they let em go and picked up CV's again.

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If the LX Charger, which is a fairly beefy unibody platform, isn't holding up to police duty as it is stated in the article, I wonder how well the Zeta would be able to hold up.

If they survive police duty in Australia...

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SHOs for police duty.....365hp, AWD, huge trunk. they could reprogram the dash display to work with their computers they carry on their person.

this is the thinking that can help amortize the ecoboost devlopment cost.

it's a 4400 pound car.. it should hold up.

Edited by regfootball
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i remember the local police department got the intrepids for use... many many headgaskets and transmissions later they let em go and picked up CV's again.

A few years ago the suburban police station around the corner from me had two Intrepids, an Explorer, a Tahoe, and two CVs.

Today it's 3 new CVs, a newer Explorer that is already showing it's age, and an unmarked Charger. Police chief personal car is a Charger SRT8.

I can't imagine they need the speed. The highest speed limit in the borough is 40mph and traffic mostly enforces that on it's own. There's no reason they couldn't get by with 3.4 powered Impalas.

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After awhile the cost of fuel will add up also.

I've seen V6 Impalas and Chargers in use around here.

The charger does look good as a cop car, but it ahs no back seat room.

Chris

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