Real Cops Test Real Cop Cars
MAR
08

Change is hard. Especially when you’re talking about changing a vital tool that you use for work every day. So it’s no surprise that the initial response to the next-generation Ford Police Interceptor sedan and utility vehicles has been mixed. Some officers are excited to try the new technology in these vehicles, while others are doubtful.

Ford made a bold move by recently inviting four police officers from around the U.S. and Canada to its Arizona Proving Grounds to experience the next-generation Ford Police Interceptor sedan and utility vehicles. No more guesses about how the new vehicles will perform. These are real police officers driving real police vehicles the way the will be used in the field. You can check out the videos at fordpoliceinterceptor.com.

Over the course of two days, the officers had the unique opportunity to drive prototypes of the Ford Police Interceptor sedan and utility, along with the current Ford CVPI, the Dodge Charger Pursuit and the Chevy Tahoe for comparison purposes.

To give you a look behind the scenes, we interviewed Lieutenant John Leas from the San Diego Police Department. A 34-year veteran, Lieutenant Leas is the regional Emergency Vehicle Operations training manager, managing EVOC training for basic academy and in-service police officers and deputy sheriffs from throughout San Diego County.

An EVOC instructor for 26 years, Lieutenant Leas serves on a number of Emergency Vehicle Operator Course (EVOC) related committees with the California Commission on Peace Officer Standards and Training, most notably the Safe Driving Campaign. He is also a certified law enforcement driving simulator instructor.

Here’s what he had to say:

theFordStory: When you first learned you were taking part in the test drive, what was your reaction?

I was excited to get an opportunity to preview these next-generation vehicles.

Going in to the test drive, what were your expectations? What did you think you’d be doing?

I expected to get the opportunity to test-drive all the major manufacturer’s police package offerings. I anticipated we would be doing a substantial amount of performance driving over the two days.

Did the test drive meet your expectations?

Yes, with one exception. I would have preferred more time behind the wheel truly putting the vehicles through a variety of challenges. We were limited due to the film production crew functions (interviews, equipment setup, etc.) and somewhat limited in track time availability.

Prior to taking part in the test drive, what was your perception of the new Police Interceptor?

I liked the looks of both the sedan and the sport utility but had concerns about interior cockpit room in the sedan.

What is your impression of the new Ford Police Interceptors after driving them?

The engineers did their homework and listened to their customers. I was most impressed with the sport utility – plenty of cockpit room, outstanding handling and power, versatility on- and off-road. Absolutely a fantastic package!  The sport utility would be my top choice for our agency.

How do you feel the Police Interceptor would help make your typical day easier or more efficient?

It is comfortable, safe, extremely stable and the engineering built into it makes it easy to drive, even in a high-performance mode.  By far the best vehicle I have ever driven!

What is the one thing you’d tell your fellow officers in regards to the next-generation Police Interceptor vehicles?

You have to test-drive them!  They are phenomenal!

Overall, did you enjoy the experience?

Yes, very much so!  Everyone was great to work with, the engineers were there to discuss product testing and design and the product was better than I could ever imagine.  I was so impressed, I went out and bought a new 2011 Ford Explorer as my new family vehicle because I liked the design, the built-in occupant safety measures and the overall quality-control of a fine product. I was not disappointed, even though my new civilian model is quite different from the next-generation Police Interceptor platform – it’s still awesome!

Each officer had a chance to drive both Ford Interceptors and the competitors in a variety of settings, including a road course, a wet pad, an autocross course and a gravel pit (to simulate snow and other poor handling conditions). Additionally, Ford Police Interceptor development engineers were on hand to provide officers with in-depth explanations and information on the vehicles and the development process. The results of this intensive two-day session were captured on video and are now live on fordpoliceinterceptor.com.

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0 COMMENTS ON THIS ARTICLE
J C This car just puts the public more at risk from these crazy cops and their road stunts that hurt/kill innocent citizens every year. Besides, with the helicopters, radios, and all the cop cars already out there why is this car necessary? So many cops in other countries do soooo much more with sooo much less...
3 year(s) ago via
Sasha Jaafari I look forward to all the service costs these new cars bring with their bleeding edge technology and weaker chassis and drivetrains
3 year(s) ago via
Cagri Atilla Balkan If the Crown Victoria was a 'toilet' as somebody implied, I don't think it would have lasted as long in police duty. Sometimes there's no point in trying to repair what isn't broke. The beauty of these cars was the fact that they kept on running with minimal maintenance. If anything, the Crown Vic is "Built Ford Tough". Try working on a transversely mounted engine, and then tell me how magnificent new cars are. These days its all about fancy stuff like push button start and ESP and what have you, making even the most basic thing ever so complicanted. And when it finally decides to take a dump and some component somewhere fails, I don't know which is worse - paying stupid money to replace the offending part(s) or the labour involved to actually replace it. I'd rather do something like replace valve seals or timing chain tensioners on a Crown Vic than change spark plugs on anything with a transversely mounted engine. Then with all the all-aluminum engines, God forbid you overheat your engine. The Panther platform was what made me a Ford guy, and it's a shame to see it go.
3 year(s) ago via Facebook
Chad Keen The new cars will never hold up to real police abuse, I mean a froont wheel drive V6? Even with the turbo, thats just added maintenance cost when it burns up! Ford should have kept the CV, put the new 5.0 in it, 18in wheels for 4piston brakes front and 2 pistons rear like the stang. Put a real driveshaft in it and a retune it'll hit 160 and hang with a Charger!
3 year(s) ago via Facebook
Thomas Artman I'm sure the CV was a great car, but there's no room for it in this day and age of costly fuel with tight local and state budgets. These new Taurus-based police vehicles are great. I'm glad to see that their performance tops the competition.
3 year(s) ago via
SeattleChap My 2000 Crown Vic has 689,000 Miles, 2nd engine!!! BEAT THAT!!
3 year(s) ago via
Rand Boland bad guy, bad guy, where are you going to do? Right On FORD They look HOT and they are! Wow EcoBoost with two Turbos 365hp out of a Six cylinder More power less weight equals FASTEST FORD
3 year(s) ago via Facebook
Andy I'd just like to say nothing holds up to abuse like the crown vics! I've had my 1990 cv (ex sheriff car) for about 13-14 years and I have beat the hell out of it over the years and it just keeps asking for more! If people know how to drive, driving a rear wheel drive in the winter isn't a problem. Last winter I drove it to work all winter, most of the time before the plows were out, busting drifts as high as the hood without a problem although it had to sit in when I got there or it would be a big block of ice after work.
3 year(s) ago via
Joseph Brauner Those of us that drive Fords may not have as personal relationship as some other makes they constantly needing attention. But we have long term relationships Fords just do not wear out. My 98 F150 tuned up and oil changed not bad teenager that gets 23mpg on hwy I love my 4,6
3 year(s) ago via
Matt Middleton Look forward to seeing if the front wheel drive version will stand up to the abuse. It will be a sad day to part w/the V8.
3 year(s) ago via Facebook
Doug Novak What Else but a Ford, The Best!
3 year(s) ago via
Dennis I drive a Lincoln Town Car, 1999 model, built solid, 27 mpg on interstate with a V-8. Sad to see the Crown Vic platform go away. They were excellent cars.
3 year(s) ago via
Bryan Notheisz And for those of us from colder climates, the Crown Vic is USELESS in wet, slippery snow. Try and go up a hill and you end up sideways, even with good winters and years of experience. Maybe some have posi rearends??
3 year(s) ago via Facebook
Bryan Notheisz Definately time to replace the Crown Vic, which is not much different than a 1980 Ltd. And hate to say it on a Ford page, but that new Caprice looks pretty good (not as good as the outgoing Charger). Wait and see on this one though.
3 year(s) ago via Facebook
Anthony Lopez crown vic is a tank. i just change my differential fluid. i love the car. its a tank and build to last. easily can go over 225.000 well maintained
3 year(s) ago via Facebook
James Defelice all u that put crown vic down if i put my ideas in to it will be faster @ handle better . i`ll bet u in a race and put u in a ditch lmao with my crown vic
3 year(s) ago via Facebook
Tom Cunningham They discontinued the Crown Vic because the entire vehicle is antiquated. End of story. If you really are a "Ford Fan" you should welcome these new vehicles.
3 year(s) ago via Facebook
Anthony Jackson Crown vics last forever, I drive an 07...why do you think the majority of cop cars and cabs in this country are crown vics and up having 200,000 something miles on them when you find them used?
3 year(s) ago via Facebook
Thomas Word the only good cop car is a chevrolet.....it dont start, and when it does, it cant out run a ford!
3 year(s) ago via Facebook
Vinny Swampnuts Cops can't touch my 95 slobra! Stroked blown and bottle fed...wanna race?
3 year(s) ago via Facebook
Tommy Knapp Street racing is for IDIOTS. Take it to the track.
3 year(s) ago via Facebook
Tim Theodorou My guess is the Crown Victoria is being discontinued because it would cost alot to bring it up to the new safety and emissions standards.
3 year(s) ago via Facebook
Bryan Labao Question will be cost to fix these things when they get in a accident. The Vic was easy to repair. They really need to revisit the panther.
3 year(s) ago via Facebook
Bill Karnes Our Sherrif got a new F150-4 door-he looks real nice in it. I wish they all could have a new F150 or F250 would be better.
3 year(s) ago via Facebook
Scott Ferguson i have an 20psi xflow turbo built out of stock bits that hauls arse :p and thats on safe tune haha
3 year(s) ago via Facebook
Dustin Muncey Yeah I have a friend who has a sweet Crown Vic dual straight pipe flowmasters....sounds so beefy!!!
3 year(s) ago via Facebook
Tommy Knapp I'd like to run against a cop. 1 of my mustangs maybe even my 65... FEARED ON RACE DAY!!!
3 year(s) ago via Facebook
Joey McClary Still don't understand why you guys stopped making the Crown Vic.
3 year(s) ago via Facebook
Tim Theodorou Nice! Cant wait to see these out on the street. Shame the Crown Victoria Police Interceptor had to be killed off though.
3 year(s) ago via Facebook
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