Exploring the Future of Police Cars

Posted On Thursday February 18, 2021

With advancements in technology, more drivers are shopping for smarter, more efficient vehicles that provide a slew of new features, and enhance comfort and safety for the occupants. However, it’s not only the general public that is looking for enhancements to vehicles. Fleet managers from police services across North America are also looking into the newest technology and researching ways to provide the same criteria to uniform officers on patrol 24/7 in vehicles that see millions of kilometres in travel.

With fiscal responsibility in mind and the needs and requirements of police officers and vehicles, Peel Police introduced the Ford Interceptor Hybrid Utility into its fleet in 2020. “The Hybrid Utility checked off a lot of boxes for us,” said Mark Figueiredo, Director of Materials Management. “When you think about the average police vehicle out there, specifically the engine hours, a lot of people don’t know that 65% of those engine hours are spent idling. With the hybrid technology, all of those idling hours will be on battery.”

But the question has always remained, can more be done to improve our reliance on gasoline?

Enter the electric vehicle.

What may be reminiscent of the futuristic cars from the RoboCop series, the all-electric series of vehicles are LOADED with technology to enhance safety, comfort, and, more importantly, an organization's carbon footprint. However, don't expect to see all-electric police cars on the roads of Peel Region just yet. Further trials and tests must still be conducted to ensure that an all-electric fleet is sustainable for police work and more importantly, that the vehicle doesn't run out of juice during an officer's shift.

"The range of the electric vehicle and total cost of ownership were compelling to us when this idea was first brought to us by Ryan Anstey from our Communications team; however, there are several other considerations that need to be addressed, including sufficient charging infrastructure, space for police equipment, and battery demand in the cold winters we have here in Ontario. This loaned vehicle will help us explore all of those considerations," said Figueiredo. "Climate change is real, and we have to continuously innovate and adapt to do our part to preserve the planet for future generations."

The days of efficient patrol cars could soon be a reality in a city near you and provide quite a surprise when the blue and red lights come on and you realize it's an electric vehicle!


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