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Bloomfield Hills (Mich.) Police Department uses a blue Chevrolet Corvette for parades and other warm-weather events.

Sporty Police Vehicles

Law enforcement officers usually get to drive "sportier" cars for community relations activities, parades or other warm-weather events. The Bloomfield (Mich.) Police Department, because of a special relationship with General Motors, can call to duty a Chevrolet Corvette, Cadillac CTS Sport, HRR, or Cadillac XLR-V. For more on the vehicles, read the article, "Sporty Police Cars."

The Vectrix VX-3 is a three-wheel, fully electric vehicle that can reach a top speed of 68 mph and has a range of 35-55 miles with a 30 amp/hour LiFePO4 battery.

Vectrix VX-3 Electric Vehicle

The Los Angeles Police Department is now field-testing the Vectrix VX-3, a unique three-wheeled electric patrol vehicle that will be available in the spring. The LAPD is testing the scooter-type vehicle at the city's LA Live entertainment complex that includes Staples Center. The vehicle was debuted at the 2010 COPSWEST trade show. Photos by Paul Clinton.

Ford designer Melvin Betancourt developed a customized undercover stealth version of the 2012 Police Interceptor, described as "stylish and full of high-tech surprises." The inspiration for the project came from Lockheed's SR-71 "Blackbird" - the long range, Mach 3+ strategic reconnaissance aircraft used by the U.S. Air Force from 1964 to 1998.

Ford Stealth PI Concept

The Ford Motor Co. produced a "stealth" version of its 2012 Police Interceptor for an automotive trade show. Ford has no current plants to produce the stealth concept vehicle, yet it released additional photos showing its spy-car features that include lighting that isn't noticible until its activated, a secret weapons compartment in the glove box and more sinister body styling lines. The vehicle appeared at the SEMA (Specialty Equipment Market Association) Show in early November. Photos are courtesy of Ford.

The TPV was built for urban or rural response due to its 116-inch  wheelbase (shorter than other ARVs for better maneuverability), a ground clearance of 13 inches, a width of 85 inches, and a  governed speed of almost 75 mph. It arrives with optional four-wheel drive.

Oshkosh Defense TPV

Oshkosh Defense's Tactical Protector Vehicle (TPV) looks ready for serious business. It's a large vehicle compared to a passenger SUV, but it's actually smaller than some other tactical rescue vehicles designed for the police market. Wisconsin-based Oshkosh Defense has been making armored rolling stock for the U.S. military since 1918. The Oshkosh Defense TPV—the company's first tactical response vehicle for law enforcement—benefits from its manufacturer's long history of making military vehicles. Read POLICE Magazine's "First Look" article on the TPV.

The Carbon Motors E7 prototype patrol vehicle looks something like a cross between an exotic sports car and a prop vehicle from a science fiction film. Its body styling is dynamic, muscular, almost startling, and it has the ability to visibly excite police audiences. It's powered by a 3.0-liter diesel engine and rear-wheel drive powertrain.

Carbon Motors E7 Patrol Car

Firefighters, the military, paramedics, even postal carriers, drive vehicles built for their jobs. The Carbon Motors' E7 would give law enforcement officers such a vehicle. Time will tell whether it becomes the "patrol car of the future." But here's a closer look at its purpose-built (mostly interior) features that have made an impression with officers.

Kawasaki returned to the police motorcycle market with the Concours 14P, a sport touring model. The 2010 version is now available from Beaudry Motors Inc., Kawasaki's Idaho-based factory authorized police dealer.

Kawasaki Concours 14P Motorcycle

Kawasaki reentered the law enforcement market with the 2009 Concours 14P police motorcycle that arrived in June. The Idaho State Police bought seven bikes to become the first agency to begin using them for motor patrol. For 2010, the company added a few upgrades such as heated hand grips, traction control and a tire pressure moniting system as standard features. Photos are of the 2009 Concours 14P and courtesy of Beaudry Motors Inc.

In 1919, Ford produced a Model T police truck (known by its slang term 'Paddy' wagon) that police departments used to transport inebriated revelers to a holding cell. The company had produced a similar field ambulance during World War I that was also a Model T.

Ford Patrol: Through the Years

The Ford Motor Co.'s March announcement that it will introduce a new patrol car has been met with a high level of interest from officers who have been driving the Ford Crown Vic Police Interceptor since the 1990s. Ford has been producing vehicles for law enforcement for almost 100 years. Here's a look at photos and ads through the years that feature the company's vehicles, beginning with a Model T police truck produced in 1919.

Once a year, vehicle training officers from the Michigan State Police take new patrol vehicles out to a raceway and pursuit course to evaluate them on acceleration and top speed, braking, ergonomics, fuel economy and communications.

Michigan State Police Vehicle Evaluation

Each year, the Michigan State Police driving unit evaluates law enforcement vehicles from the new model year. The unit evaluates patrol cars, SUVs and motorcycles using a series of tests that test each vehicle's performance, ergonomics and mechanic-friendly qualities. The results are tallied and included in a report that's used by police fleet managers to aid in the decision to purchase patrol vehicles.

The Ford Police Interceptor sedan replaces the Crown Vic, bringing more power and fuel savings with its V-6 than the previous V-8-powered patrol car.

Ford's Police Interceptor Sedan

Ford's new Taurus-based police interceptor will replace the aging "Crown Vic" in late 2011. Like the civilian version of the 2010 Taurus, the new full-sized patrol car will arrive in all-wheel and front-wheel drive versions and a pair of powertrain configurations. The V-6 engines will deliver better performance than many current V-8s, according to Ford.

Group 1 Automotive in Dallas is offering a "special service" Dodge Challenger with a custom-tuned V-8 engine that's capable of more than 400 hp, which would make it the most powerful patrol car available. It can reach a top speed of 165 mph. It arrives with black OEM wheels and can also be had in the more stealth solid black.

Dodge Challenger Patrol Car

A Texas Chrysler dealer is offering a powerhouse law enforcement version of the re-introduced Dodge Challenger muscle car that can reach 165 mph. The vehicle is available with a variety of custom options and is currently being used by several Texas agencies as a highway car for drug interdiction duty in solid black. We've blogged about the Challenger. Now, take a more in-depth tour with this gallery. Photos courtesy of Group 1 Automotive.

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