A California police department is starting a pilot program to replace their gas-guzzling patrol cars with zero-emission Teslas.
It’s not just regular folks that want to give up gas--police departments all around the world are looking at electric vehicles as a means of saving money by not having to fill up on dead dinosaurs all the time.
The initial cost on electric vehicles like the Tesla Model S is still quite staggering for regular folk, but police departments have more cash to throw around. Only problem is, police have some specific operational requirements that most people don’t have to worry about, such as having a back seat that can be partitioned off to keep suspects safe and secure or being able to chase down bandits on a busy highway.
That’s why the City of Fremont is looking into just how well a modern electric vehicle can handle wearing a badge. In a recently announced pilot program, Fremont Police Department said they were testing a Tesla Model S to see not only how well it holds up in the field, but also how much money the department could save with a fleet of converted electric cars.
Fremont PD didn’t go to Tesla to get a new Model S for their pilot: instead, they got a used Model S 85 and spent roughly $4,500 converting it into a police cruiser. Upgrades include a light bar, push bumper, ballistic barriers, police flashers, trunk lighting, a perp barrier, and an equipment console to carry the officer’s laptop.
Cost of the used Model S was $61,478.50, which includes all taxes and fees. Fremont PD says this cost is comparable to a new Ford Explorer Interceptor, but obviously saves on gas. The Model S cruiser is also a truly zero-emission vehicle thanks to Fremont PD’s solar-powered car chargers.
The goal here is to find ways of getting the police department’s carbon footprint down 25% from 2005 levels by the year 2020. If the study finds that a used Model S can do everything that a Ford or a Dodge Charger can without burning any gas, we might see the city adopting a fleet of electric cars in the very near future.