The American police car segment is heating up with equally interesting offers from GM (Chevy Caprice), Chrysler (Dodge Charger) and Ford. In their latest battle, the Dearborn automaker's Taurus-based AWD Police Interceptor achieved the fastest lap time in tests carried out by the Los Angeles Sheriff's Department (LASD), signaling that it's a worthy successor for the Crown Victoria.
Powered by the twin-turbocharged 3.5-liter EcoBoost V6 with 365 hp and 350 lb-ft (475 Nm) of torque, the Police Interceptor can reach 60 mph (96 km/h) in just 5.8 seconds.
During tests held in California, the Ford was faster than V8 competitors, but that's not much of a surprise, since force induction compensates for the lack of displacement (the Chevy Caprice has a 6.0-liter V8, while the Dodge Charger boasts a 5.7-liter HEMI V8).
LASD also tested the base Taurus Interceptor, which comes with a naturally V6 churning out 280 hp, and all-wheel drive. According to Ford, it fared well against the V6-powered competition, beating them in braking, acceleration and lap times.
The Blue Oval's third police car to be tested was the Explorer-based Police Interceptor Utility, with a 3.7-liter V6 engine and AWD. Ford said that, loaded with 400 pounds (181 kg) of cargo, it was more than two seconds faster than the Chevrolet Tahoe on LASD's circuit.
Ford Police Interceptors are available in multiple configurations (even with front-wheel drive) and deliver at least 20% more fuel efficiency compared to the outgoing Crown Victoria. Sounds like authorities could get a bang for their buck, but we have the feeling that GM and Chrysler aren't done yet.
By Csaba Daradics