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Oh, how far things have come. NASCAR, as you may have heard, traces its roots back to moonshiners trying to outrun police cars. Now it'll be the stock cars chasing after the police when NASCAR rounds out the season at Homestead-Miami Speedway.
The vehicles in question are Ford's latest "purpose-built" Police Interceptors - the Taurus-based sedan and Explorer-based utility - which Dearborn rolled out last year to replace the old-school Crown Victoria-based squad cars patrolling America's highways and city streets. The pair have been selected, much to the anticipated delight of race-loving cops, to serve as the pace cars for the upcoming Ford Championship Weekend, where all three of NASCAR's major series - Camping World trucks, Nationwide Series and Sprint Cup - wrap up their seasons.
It's not the first time, of course, that Fords have been used as pace cars in NASCAR - far from it - but while the Focus, Explorer, Fusion Hybrid and Mustang GT have all taken their turn recently as what they'd call "safety cars" overseas, this is the first time in the many years of leading the field in law enforcement vehicles that Ford will use its cop cars for the task.Permalink | Email this | Comments
Tags: ford, ford championship week, ford interceptor, ford police interceptor, ford police interceptor sedan, ford police interceptor utility, Homestead, homestead-miami speedway, Interceptor, Motorsports, Nascar, pace car, Police Interceptor, Police/Emergency, safety car, Sedan, Suv
2011 Ford Police Interceptor - Click above for high-res image gallery
The battle for law enforcement domination rages on. A gaggle of would-be police cruisers showed up at the Los Angeles Sheriff's Department for public testing recently, and of all the competitors, the Taurus-based Ford Police Interceptor with its twin-turbocharged, direct-injected 3.5-liter EcoBoost V6 engine managed to turn the quickest lap time of the bunch by beating out the V8-powered forces from Dodge and Chevrolet. It also ran from 0 to 60 miles per hour in 5.8 seconds. Ford isn't saying exactly which other cars were on hand for abuse, but we can probably guess they were the Caprice and Charger.
The new 3.7-liter V6-powered Police Interceptor Utility, which is based on upcoming 2011 Ford Explorer, also managed to turn a lap time that was a full two seconds quicker than the new law enforcement Chevrolet Tahoe. Both vehicles were laden with a 400-pound cargo box at the time.
Ford's standard 3.5-liter V6 held its own during the competition, too - beating out the rest of the V6-equipped enforcers in handling, braking, acceleration and lap time tests. Ford says that in addition to performance and durability, the Interceptor also brings impressive fuel economy to the table - offering up to 20-percent better economy than the outgoing Crown Victoria.
How's that for a change from the last time these bruisers locked horns? Hit the jump for the full press release.
Gallery: 2012 Ford Police Interceptor
Live photos by Steven J. Ewing / Copyright (C)2010 AOL
[Source: Ford]Permalink | Email this | Comments
Tags: ford police interceptor, ford police interceptor utility, los angeles sherrifs department, Police Interceptor, police interceptor utility
Ford Police Interceptor Utility - Click above for high-res image gallery
When Ford took the wraps off of its Taurus-based Police Interceptor sedan earlier this year, we were told that a second, utility-oriented police pursuit vehicle would be coming down the pipeline. Enter the Police Interceptor Utility, based off the 2011 Explorer crossover. A Flex-styled paddy wagon would have been cool, but the Explorer's higher ground clearance makes it more versatile for law enforcement officials who require all-terrain capability.
Unlike the sedan, which will be available with two different powertrains, the Explorer Interceptor only comes with Ford's 3.5-liter Ti-VCT V6, delivering "at least 280" horsepower and mated to a six-speed automatic transmission. Both front- and all-wheel-drive configurations are available, and it appears that the Explorer's terrain management system will not be offered on the Police Interceptor. The latest host of driver aids like curve control and Ford's AdvanceTrac Roll Stability Control are standard on the Interceptor Utility, as are larger brakes, a tougher suspension and 18-inch steel wheels.
Inside, new seats have been fitted up front with reductions in side bolstering to accommodate an officer's utility belt, and the gear shifter is now mounted on the column in order to provide space for computer equipment in the center console. Much like the Taurus Interceptor, Ford specifically designed the spacing between the seats to ensure that existing police equipment can be carried over to the new vehicles without issue. Things aren't exactly luxurious in the rear seats (duh), but occupants out back do get their own climate control system (Ford says this is ideal for K9 units) as well as stab plates in the front seat backs to keep the driver and passenger safe.
Ford has also gone the extra step to rework some of the Explorer's interior functions to better suit police needs. The steering wheel buttons, for example, are remappable and can be programmed to operate a host of auxiliary functions (lights, sirens, etc.). What's more, Ford's SYNC system is on hand and can be used to voice-activate the different police communication and audio equipment.
Don't expect to see the Police Interceptor Utility out on the road until 2012 at the earliest. Ford says that production will begin in late 2011 alongside the sedan at the automaker's Chicago assembly plant. For now, check out our high-res galleries of both live and official images, and follow the jump for the presser.
Gallery: Ford Police Interceptor Utility
Live photos Copyright (C)2010 Steven J. Ewing / AOL
[Source: Ford]Permalink | Email this | Comments
Tags: 2011 ford explorer, explorer, featured, Ford Explorer Police Interceptor, ford police interceptor, ford police interceptor utility, Police Interceptor
Ford Police Interceptor Utility, the Blue Oval's latest police-grade offering, starts with the 2011 Explorer, stuffs in the heavy-duty high-tech goodies from the Taurus Police Interceptor and adds a few more tricks. It's an Explorer built for a beating. More »
Tags: explorer, Explorer Police Car, Ford Explorer Interceptor, Ford Explorer Police Car, Ford Explorer Police Cruiser, ford interceptor, Ford Interceptor SUV, ford police interceptor utility, Ford SUV Police Cruiser, Interceptor, Interceptor Utility, police cars, police cruiser, police vehicles, Top