Johnny law is going hybrid soon and Ford will be the first to put them there with the new Police Responder Hybrid pursuit-rated cruiser unveiled at the New York Auto Show.
Based on the Ford Fusion Hybrid, the new Ford Police Responder Hybrid sedan will be the first pursuit-rated hybrid to be offered to police departments as well as the first police product based on the Fusion sedan.
The Police Responder Hybrid Sedan uses the already proven Atkinson-cycle 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine with an electric motor powered by a lithium-ion battery. The main difference between this and the Fusion Hybrid is its tuning.
This hybrid is calibrated for law enforcement’s unique duty cycles and can drive in EV mode up to 60 mph. It can also deal with extended and more immediate demand for maximum performance modes where the engine and the battery are put together for acceleration.
Here the Police Responder Hybrid is projected to provide EPA-estimated combined gas mileage of 38 miles per gallon, slightly less than that of the Fusion Hybrid due to the more aggressive tune. Ford points out however it’s twice that of the Taurus based Police Interceptor V6 which only gets 18 mpg combined.
A major contributor to its efficiency and reduced pollution for inner cities is the major reduction in engine idling. Because of its lithium-ion battery, the high electrical demand of a police vehicle can be handled even with the engine off.
Ford says Police Responder Hybrid sedan customers could see nearly $3,900 a year in potential fuel savings per vehicle compared to the Taurus based Police Interceptor. And when you factor in reduced idle time it could also help city governments reach many of their emissions fleet mandates.
It’s also expected that a pursuit-rated non-hybrid version of the Fusion will likely follow as from all indications, Ford will at some point be discontinuing the Taurus and by extension the current Police Interceptor sedan.
This may use a 2.0 liter EcoBoost four-cylinder or even the 2.7 liter twin-turbocharged EcoBoost V6 we see in the Fusion Sport with its all-wheel drive. Any number of options are open.
Ford has said that there’s another new hybrid police vehicle slated for North America which is likely to be a version of the previously announced F-150 Hybrid or even a hybrid version of the new 2018 Ford Expedition SSV.
For now though, the Fusion based Police Responder Hybrid sedan order blanks open later this year and the first ones will be available for duty next year.