Ford just released details of its all-new Police Interceptor and, news is, it comes standard with a hybrid powertrain. The purpose-built law enforcement SUV “doesn’t compromise interior space, improves pursuit performance, and aims to lower fuel costs,” according to Ford. It's expected to save an estimated $3,200 per vehicle of annual fuel bills over the current non-hybrid model.
While the vehicle is currently undergoing fuel economy certification, it is said to deliver an EPA-estimated 24 miles per gallon on the combined cycle—that’s a near-40 percent improvement over the current 3.7-liter V6. Ford also states that “If you applied these savings to every Ford Police Interceptor Utility sold in 2017, it would equate to more than $126 million at $2.93 a gallon, or more than 43 million gallons of fuel.”
The new vehicle reduces engine idling time to save fuel. The hybrid will power its lights, computers, radios, and more using its lithium-ion battery, allowing the gasoline engine to run intermittently to charge it. Besides fuel-saving characteristics, it is also said to accelerate faster and achieve a higher top speed than its predecessor. When maximum performance is demanded, both the engine and electric motors work simultaneously like any other hybrid. Keeping in mind its capability for increased speeds, it has been equipped with 75-mph rear impact protection as well.
Executive Vice President of Product Development and Purchasing Hau Thai-Tang said, “We’re committed to electrifying vehicles for all customers, including law enforcement who need the high performance and low operating costs that Ford’s next-generation hybrids will excel at providing,” He added, “Standard all-wheel drive is important because crooks don’t stop when it rains.”
In addition to the above-mentioned improvements, it also comes with an array of features to help make policing easier. The available all-new Police Perimeter Alert enhances the previous Surveillance Mode by using the vehicle’s Blind Spot Information System to monitor approximately 270 degrees of movement outside the vehicle. A visual display in the instrument cluster shows moving objects, the motion trail, and threat level. It even automatically sounds a chime, rolls up the windows, and locks the doors when a threat is detected. Also available is an on-demand rear camera and a Class III trailer tow package that raises towing capacity to 5,000 pounds.
The vehicle’s accompanying equipment also includes a built-in Ford modem and a complimentary two-year subscription that allows officers access to vehicle information like fuel use data, CO2 emissions, etc. Stephen Tyler, Ford police brand marketing manager stated, “With Ford Telematics, we’re helping our police customers unlock the data from their vehicles to provide them with more effective ways to manage their fleets and improve operations.”
The introduction of this pursuit vehicle and other consumer hybrids also supports Ford’s plan to offer hybrid, plug-in hybrid, or both versions for every new utility vehicle in North America.
The all-new Ford Police Interceptor will be manufactured at the Ford Chicago Assembly plant and up-fitted at Ford’s Chicago Modification Center. The vehicle is scheduled to go on sale next summer.