We have all seen an unmarked Crown Victoria cruising around town, but it is not doing much cruising. The 4.6-liter V8 engine in the squad cars offer an underwhelming 16 to 17 mpg combined, even though they rarely travel any distance at highway speeds. All the short trips, starts, stops and constant idling are not the ideal for any vehicle to attain any type of acceptable fuel economy. With every city, county and state feeling the squeeze to save money, vehicle expenses are some of the largest and most difficult budgets to control. To combat expenses and offer a more fuel-friendly police vehicle, Ford has developed and will soon be offering what they call, “The Next-Generation Police Interceptor.”
From anticipation to realization
The new Interceptors (formerly known as a Crown Victoria) come from the need to replace most agency standards, which are vehicles capable of high-speed pursuit. With drastic changes being made in police department policies to avoid these high-speed chases, Ford police marketing manager Jonathan Honeycutt admits that, “Not every police officer needs a pursuit-rated vehicle.” In many cities, they have trimmed back their fleets and may include only a few pursuit vehicles, even going as far to commandeer seized high-performance vehicles from criminals and repaint them as police vehicles. The department can now instead provide detectives, special investigators, and even campus police with a more fuel-efficient vehicle to reduce fuel expenses. Ford listened to the requests of various law enforcement agencies and developed a turbocharged four-cylinder EcoBoost engine for police vehicles to meet the demand.
Wait, a four-cylinder police vehicle?
We had to take a double take when we read that too. Ford announced the new “special service police” sedans, which include a new fuel-efficient 2.0-liter EcoBoost turbocharged four-cylinder engine. The engine has 240 horsepower delivered with the help of a six-speed automatic transmission. The fuel economy is rated at 23 mpg city, 32 mpg highway and 26-27 mpg combined. Ford did the math and found that agencies that used the special service police package will save, “$5,040.92 in fuel costs over three years.” This was an estimation made by Ford, the figures were based on 30,000 miles driven, with gas at $3.65 per gallon. Historically, police cars have been powered by high-output V8 engines designed for maximum power in response and chase situations, today there is no longer the need for fleets of these vehicles. With advances in other technology, such as automatically changing traffic signals and more laws designed to discourage chase situations, the focus needed to be turned more toward efficiency and less toward all out power. While the legacy of the Crown Victoria carries on in spirit, the new Interceptors will be more cost effective for government agencies, which will funnel down to decreased burdens for taxpayers, which is good for everyone.
New and improved features
The new special service police sedans will feature an active grille shutter that manages airflow to balance aerodynamics and engine cooling. The cabin will be equipped with level 3 ballistic door panels, side airbags, and a rollover protection safety canopy. The vehicles frame was reinforced with a safety cell construction system to enhance structural integrity. The new interceptors will be debut in the 2014 model year. While most people will not notice the change once they get their specific police car paint jobs, the savings will begin immediately.
The next generation of police interceptors will reduce fuel costs for law enforcement agencies across the country and provide an overall savings to the citizens they will be protecting as well. The engine powering the new interceptor, Ford’s EcoBoost engine is offered in a variety of other Ford passenger models, including the Taurus, to help you save money on your fuel budget as well. To see all the great new Fords available at Sames Ford, please visit our website at www.SamesFordCC.com.