Ford’s Crown Victoria has dominated the landscape of law enforcement in North America, but its run is about to end. The Crown Vic will cease production sometime in late 2011 and be replaced with the new Ford Police Interceptor. Thankfully, the new Police Interceptor will be immediately offered without any interruptions and is expected to exceed the durability, safety, performance, and fuel economy of the vehicle it’s replacing. In addition, Ford is introducing a Police Interceptor utility vehicle to provide fleets with a choice of vehicles to meet their needs.

“Police nationwide asked for a new kind of weapon in the battle for public safety, and Ford is answering the call with a purpose-built vehicle – engineered and built in America – that’s as dynamic as it is durable,” said Mark Fields, Executive Vice President, Ford Motor Company, and President of The Americas. Fields was one of three Keynote Speakers at NAFA’s 2010 Institute & Expo in Detroit where attendees were able to get a sneak peek at the new Police Interceptor.

To develop the new Police Interceptor, Ford engineers worked hand-in-hand with law enforcement professionals on Ford’s Police Advisory Board who provided valuable input on key vehicle attributes such as safety, performance, durability, driver comfort, and functionality.

“This vehicle is pursuit ready,” said Carl Widmann, Vehicle Engineering Manager for Ford. “It’s no nonsense, through and through.”

Some of the key changes include:

Safety — The Police Interceptor was engineered to pass 75-mph rear-end crash testing and features Ford’s Safety Canopy ® side-curtain air bag rollover protection system to help protect front and rear outboard passengers in both rollover and side-impact crashes. The multiple side-curtain air bags use Ford’s unique Roll Fold technology to help them slip between the occupant and the side window.

A Move To V-6 Without A Loss Of Power — The new Police Interceptor is part of a V-6 lineup that Ford says will perform equal to or better than V-8 engines. The lineup comes with two powertrain options which allow police departments to choose whichever best meets their patrol requirements. One option is a 3.5-liter V-6 engine that delivers at least 263 horsepower and E85 compatibility that is 25 percent more efficient than the 4.6 Single Overhead Cam (SOHC) V-8 offered in the current Crown Victoria Police Interceptor. The other option is an all-new 3.5-liter EcoBoost ™ V-6 twin-turbocharged, direct-injection engine that will deliver at least 365 horsepower and 350 foot-pounds of torque across a broad rpm range.

EcoBoost brings municipalities and police fleet administrators an ultra high-performance, yet environmentally friendly, police pursuit vehicle. It offers performance that bests V-8 powered police cruisers with fuel economy and CO2 emissions comparable to that of the standard V-6.

Redesigned Inside And Out — Some of the changes to the Police Interceptor include brakes that have been increased in size and performance; a purpose-built cooling package featuring a heavy-duty alternator and larger radiator; a honeycomb grill designed to work in harmony with the interior components to provide more air flow throughout the vehicle; and standard 18-inch steel wheels that are vented and designed to work in concert with the enhanced brake system.

Source: NAFA Fleet Management Association via Police One.

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