Ford Motor Co. has formally unveiled the second of 13 new electrified vehicles (EVs) the company plans to introduce in the next five years – the industry’s first pursuit-rated hybrid police car, the all-new Ford Police Responder Hybrid Sedan.
According to Ford, the new hybrid police car is part of a $4.5 billion investment to make EVs with greater capability, productivity and performance, and notably, better fuel economy.
“Electrifying our next generation of vehicles is core to our unwavering commitment to sustainability,” says Joe Hinrichs, Ford president for the Americas. “By being a leader in electrified vehicles, we remain committed to delivering cars, trucks and SUVs that are better not only for our customers, but for the environment and society, as well.”
As reported, the all-new Ford Police Responder Hybrid Sedan is making its debut in Los Angeles and New York.
In addition, Ford is also delivering the following:
- Another new hybrid police vehicle for North America;
- An all-new fully electric small SUV, coming by 2020, engineered to deliver a U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)-estimated range of at least 300 miles, to be sold in North America, Europe and Asia;
- A hybrid-powered self-driving vehicle designed for commercial mobility services, starting in North America in 2021;
- A hybrid version of the best-selling F-150 pickup, available by 2020 and sold in North America and the Middle East;
- A hybrid version of the iconic Mustang, to first debut in 2020 in North America, that will deliver V8 power and even more low-end torque; and
- A Transit Custom plug-in hybrid available in 2019 in Europe, engineered to help reduce operating costs in even the most congested streets.
As growing urban populations are overwhelming transportation systems and compromising air quality, first-time car buyers – including 50% of U.S. millennials – say they are interested in purchasing an electric car, according to a poll conducted by the Consumer Federation of America.
As Ford focuses on vehicles that deliver improved performance – such as the F-150 Hybrid with powerful towing and payload capacity, plus the ability to operate as an onboard generator – the company expects sales of hybrids, plug-in hybrids and fully electric vehicles to dramatically increase during the next decade.
In fact, Ford predicts the auto industry will offer customers more hybrids, plug-in hybrids and fully electric vehicles than gasoline-powered vehicles within the next 15 years.
Selling the most police vehicles in the U.S., with 63% market share, the company has been partnering with several cities on custom law enforcement vehicles since the days of the Model T.
The automaker says the Police Responder Hybrid Sedan will help cities decrease emissions and that it offers the potential for significant fuel savings, both while driving and while idling. While driving, Ford’s patented hybrid technology is projected to provide an EPA-estimated combined gas mileage of 38 miles per gallon – more than twice that of today’s Police Interceptor with a 3.7-liter V6 with an EPA-estimated 18 mpg combined. (Actual mileage will vary. Final EPA-estimated ratings are not yet available.)
While idling, the Police Responder Hybrid Sedan’s lithium-ion battery helps power the high electrical loads of a police vehicle, reducing engine run time and saving an estimated 0.27 gallons of fuel per hour.
Police Responder Hybrid Sedan customers could see nearly $3,900 a year in potential fuel savings per vehicle relative to the Police Interceptor, if a police vehicle is driven 20,000 miles per year, runs two shifts per day and 365 days per year, idles 4.9 hours per eight-hour shift, and is fueled at an average gas price of $2.50/gallon.
According to Ford, the new vehicle will be the first hybrid sedan with full pursuit capabilities. That means the car is certified by police agencies to be tough enough to handle police pursuits for longer periods at different speeds and over obstacles such as curbs and flooded intersections.
The Police Responder Hybrid Sedan uses an efficient Atkinson-cycle 2.0-liter engine with an electric motor fed by an advanced lithium-ion battery. The hybrid is calibrated for law enforcement’s unique duty cycle and will run in battery-only mode up to 60 mph. The car automatically switches to maximum performance – with the engine and battery working at peak acceleration levels – when needed.
“Our mission to create safe and healthy communities in Los Angeles is achieved through sustainable approaches in community policing – and that includes embracing new technologies,” says Los Angeles Police Department Chief Charlie Beck. “Patrol vehicles are a police officer’s office, and we expect them to not only be economically and environmentally efficient, but also an effective tool for fighting crime in major metropolitan areas.”
The Police Responder Hybrid Sedan can be ordered this spring and will be delivered to police departments nationwide next summer.
This year, Ford is also testing a fleet of 20 Transit Connect hybrid taxi and van prototypes in demanding traffic conditions in New York and several other major U.S. cities.