For those living their lives serving the badge, the durable V-8 engine and the body-on-frame construction of the Ford Crown Victoria was a reliable workhouse in their duty for upholding the law. Understandably so popular, Ford kept the Crown Victoria in production largely on the orders from law enforcement agencies. As the long-respected Ford Crown Victoria is retired from police duty, the Ford Motor Company were quick to supply police departments with two, new potential recruits. Already showing off a purpose-built Interceptor sedan, Ford has now delivered a promised sport-utility vehicle/crossover companion.
Unlike the uniquely-built Interceptor sedan, the Ford Interceptor utility draws from a production vehicle. The shape and hardware of the newly-released 2011 Ford Explorer serves as the rugged foundation to the Ford Interceptor utility exercising the identical devotion to quality (if not greater) as the showroom example. However, the crossover is certain to attract a different respect when light bars and law enforcement graphics.
The utility version of the Ford Interceptor draws upon the 280 horsepower, 3.5 liter V-6 engine for response to emergency situations or the rare pursuit. Aided by Ford’s Ti-VCT valve control, the smaller V-6 provides a 20% improvement in fuel mileage over the Crown Victoria’s V-8 powerplant. Matched with a six-speed automatic, the Ford Interceptor utility has been specially geared for greater acceleration and lower RPMs at cruising speed. Further mechanical enhancements Ford has addressed in outfitting the Explorer for law enforcement duties include a larger radiator, heavy-duty alternator, a water-cooled transfer case with all-wheel drive models and enlarged brakes.
Apart from beefed up mechanical equipment, police officers will also become accustomed to a greater presence of electronic aids. One such program directly focused for the Ford Interceptor utility is Curve control. Exclusively designed for the high-speed driving recognized as an occupational hazard, the Curve control system developed by Ford can ‘smart brake’ the Interceptor utility in order to retain cornering stability and direction. BLIS® (Blind Spot Information System), Rear-view camera, AdvanceTrac with Roll Stability Control and even Ford SYNC® can be named as additional gadgets acting to assist an office on duty.
Opportunistic of the Ford Crown Victoria’s ceasing production, the other American automakers are in hot pursuit of Ford’s future police car efforts. Relying on the guise of the Chevrolet Caprice nameplate (one of the few automotive names to garner the same respect of police as the Crown Victoria), the rear-wheel drive Holden Statesman sedan comes from Australia as General Motor’s newest police car candidate. Chrysler has also been promoting the Dodge Charger to the law enforcement community as the only sedan option based on an American production car.
With all the new police cars including the Ford Interceptor utility patrolling neighbourhoods, maybe RoboCop provides the best advice. “Stay out of trouble!”
Information and photo source: Ford Motor Company