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Explorer Interceptor is America's top police car
Detroit Free Press


Ford has already claimed that the police verson of the Explorer SUV has become America's new most popular cop car. Now it says it has the numbers to prove it.

Ford sold 14,086 Interceptor SUVs last year, as the police version of the Explorer is known, up 140% from the year before. At the same time, it sold 10,897 Taurus outfitted for police work, up 31% from 2012.

Together, they account for almost half of all police vehicles sold among the major brands -- Dodge, Ford and Chevrolet, according to Ford, which bases its analysis on data from industry statisticians R.L. Polk.

The industry as a whole was up 22% last year. Taurus competes in the police sedan market against Dodge Charger and Chevrolet Caprice. General Motors announced a new Chevrolet SUV in February that will go up against the Explorer. All are trying to fill the gap left by Ford's decision to kill the venerable Crown Victoria sedan, the mainstay of America's police agencies for years.

Ford says it has prospered three ways, according to Jonathan Honeycutt, police marketing manager at Ford:

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I think the CUVs/SUVs are gonna take away a lot of sales from police sedans. More room for officers and their equipment, plenty of capability in pursuits, plenty of room for "perps" in the back.
 

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I think the CUVs/SUVs are gonna take away a lot of sales from police sedans. More room for officers and their equipment, plenty of capability in pursuits, plenty of room for "perps" in the back.
I think so too. I think the advantage the Explorer has over the new Tahoe, is the lighter weight unibody construction, which allows the vehicle to be more nimble, handle better when driving fast, and offers better mpg. Police SUVs don't do much heavy towing where body on frame has it's benefit.
 

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The PIU is an excellent police car improving in all categories compared to the stalwart CVPI - quicker, better grip, roomier, better FE, better visibility, easier ingress and egress, etc.
 

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Ford seems to be at least in part minimizing the loss of the Crown Vic to the Law Enforcement Community.

Thinking back, its been almost 20 years now since GM killed the RWD Caprice (and Impala SS).
 

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While the Taurus is a bit small, the idea of offering both it and the Explorer as full on Police Interceptors with AWD was genius. They share drivelines, many other parts, maintenance schedules, driving dynamics, etc. that a mixed fleet is now financially more efficient than two vehicles that are completely different. Also, the 3.7L V6 with the 6 speed automatic and AWD is an excellent combination. As fun as the Ecoboost might be, at over $3100 for the option, it's expensive and unnecessary.
 

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Taurus is taking over market here. Though I think some of the unmarked vehicles are explorers
 

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With either no prisoner cage or a half cage behind the front passenger, the Taurus is doable for one-officer units.
 
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