Ford’s first hybrid police car screeches into New York

Published: 11 April 2017

 Ford Police Responder Hybrid Sedan
 Blue Oval’s first hybrid cop car
 Unveiled at NYIAS 2017

Even cops need to count the pennies in this age of austerity - explaining the launch of the new Ford Police Responder Hybrid Sedan at the 2017 New York International Auto Show (NYIAS).

It’s claimed to be the first ‘pursuit-rated’ hybrid police car capable of keeping up with the baddies, crashing over kerbs and even driving through shallow floods - as well as minimising plod’s environmental impact.

Our full guide to the 2017 New York motor show

What we know about Ford’s new hybrid police car

The Police Responder car packs a lithium-ion battery pack mated to the familiar 2.0-litre Atkinson Cycle four-cylinder gasoline engine you’ll find in a Mondeo Hybrid, to clean up the act of its petrol-powered Police Interceptor. It can run at speeds of up to 60mph in whisper-silent EV mode.

The new Ford Police Responder Hybrid Sedan unveiled at the 2017 NYIAS

On the EPA cycle, Ford quotes 38mpg for the newcomer - doubling the efficiency of the 18mpg cop car. Hardly scintillating economy figures, but a step in the right direction for plod.

In a nod to the fact that many patrol cars sit at idle, watching and waiting, the new Responder Hybrid Sedan powers numerous ancillaries from the lithium-ion battery pack, saving nearly a third of a gallon an hour during stake-outs, Ford claims. 

And it calculates that each hybrid cop car should save the authorities $3900 a year in fuel, if driven 20,000 miles a year at today’s pump prices. That’s a much more arresting figure.

Cabin of the Ford Police Responder Hybrid Sedan

This is no mere publicity stunt; Ford hogs 63% of the North American police car market, meaning you’re likely to see plenty of these hybrids in duty Stateside in the years ahead once deliveries start in summer 2017.

Ford gets serious about electric cars

The hybrid cop car is the second of 13 new electric Fords coming in the next five years; the Blue Oval has already confirmed:

  • The F-150 Hybrid truck Due in US and Middle East by 2020
  • A Mustang Hybrid ‘with V8 power’ Due in North America in 2020
  • Transit Custom plug-in hybrid Due in Europe in 2019
  • An autonomous self-driving hybrid Due in US in 2021
  • A fully electric small SUV with a zero-emissions range of at least 300 miles Due in the US and worldwide

It’s part of Dearborn’s plan to play catch up in the electrification stakes, as the ancien regime seek to make up ground lost to the Japanese clean-fuel pioneers such as Toyota and Honda, which popularised the mainstream hybrid genre.

Ford is investing $4.5 billion on its EV and hybrid programmes in the next five years and predicts that electrified cars will outnumber its internal combustion engined models by 2032. 

The Blue Oval claims half of American millennials are interested in buying an electric car.

More news from the New York auto show

By Tim Pollard

Editorial director of CAR's digital publishing arm. Motoring news magnet

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