Our totally genuine Ford P71 "Police Interceptors " represent the latest evolution of the most iconic and - by a long long way - the best-selling Law Enforcement car of all time, anywhere. Since the debut of its legendary "flathead" V8 in 1932, Ford fast became the vehicle of choice for police forces across North America. In 1950 Ford was the first carmaker to offer a dedicated 'police package', and the company has the distinction of being the only manufacturer to continuously offer – now for 61 consecutive years – a police package in its car selection.
The P71 has featured in virtually every American film and TV series produced in the last 25 years. Almost 20 million have been manufactured. (That figure surprises even us — we reckon the 'Die Hard' and 'Terminator' films alone trashed more than that amount!)
Roles and Duties
There are over 38,000 liveried variants of the P71 car with Agencies in the USA. Yes, that comma is in the correct place; 38,000+! That includes over 300 separate local, State and federal (i.e. national) Agencies including Sheriffs' Departments, Highway Patrols, City and Town Police forces, State Troopers, FBI, CIA, NSA, Rangers, Dept of Homeland Security, Border Protection, Food & Drugs Administration, Secret Services, NASA, U.S. Coastguard, NCIS etc. They are also the preferred 'general transportation' vehicle of choice for military organisations such as the Marines, US Army, US Air Force, US Navy, etc, and for many other regional and State Agencies (e.g. local Departments of Transport, Metropolitan/City Authorities etc) too.
They are – quite simply - a modern American icon.
Distribution & Sales in North America
P71s have never been sold in Europe and they have never been manufactured as a right-hand drive car. To ensure street-legality in the EU we must therefore specify many modifications to each car during its full refurbishment in the USA after they were retired from official duties a few months ago. Even after arrival here in Europe, where we finish them in the specified colours and markings of individual customers, we may have to incorporate some small changes to ensure compliance, but we bet you'll struggle to identify more than a couple of them!
Marked P71's are NEVER sold to the public; not by Ford, nor as 'one careful owner' 'pre-useds' by Law Enforcement Agencies in North America, NEVER!
Think about it, and the reasons become obvious - the goodies don't want to be T-boned off the Turnpike at 120mph by a baddy in one of their old buddies pretending to be a goody, do they? So at the end of their service they are stripped back to become 'ordinary' cars.
So how can we offer genuine P71 "Police Interceptors" to you? Well that's like the ingredients for Coke – it's a secret, but it is essentially because of "Who we know" and "What we know"!
But we do provide a detailed Info Pack with each car which includes comprehensive facts and information to further reassure customers, and indeed the law enforcement authorities 'on the beat' in Europe, that these cars are perfectly safe to own and operate here.
The intended life-span of these cars is a minimum 250,000 miles. Some States demand that their Emergency-response P71's cover at least 150,000 miles before they are moved on, and their non-emergency P71's must cover 200,000 miles before they are put out to pastures new. Needless to say, our cars have proven mileages which are nothing approaching those sorts of distances – in fact by US Standards our P71s are barely 'run-in'!
As a fleet operator vehicle, spares and parts are relatively cheap and simple to replace, even in Europe, where there are plenty of OEM parts in common with many other cars.
By way of examples, P71s use many standard Ford Europe 'Motorcraft' oil filters, and the European-legal P70-series rear light clusters supplied by us cost much less than a comparable part for a smaller Mondeo manufactured in Europe!
Our cars originate from a 'dry State' in southern USA, where they have never seen salt or snow. In northern US States and Canada the winters can be tough; when snow falls roads are salted or even sanded. In the southern States the closest a P71 gets to salt is when the officer makes a comfort stop at the local McDonalds! So it don't have rust, no way, no sir!
A couple of civilian versions of the Crown Victoria ('C/V') were also manufactured until 2008, but never with the unique features of our 'Interceptor' package. Unlike the list of special high speed pursuit and other features found in the P71s, C/Vs were the road-going equivalent of your favourite Sunday afternoon armchair!
Ford Fleet Division manufactured an even longer wheelbase version of the Crown Victoria car for taxi fleets for some years — known as a 'P72'. Although some body shell panels were common amongst the 'C/V', P71 and P72 types of vehicles, that is where any similarity between them ended. Designed and constructed for a completely different working environment, the P72 incorporated components, assemblies and gearing ratios intended for slow speed and intensive stop/start inner city taxi work. So, for example, it was usually assembled with a 'CNG' (compressed natural gas) powered engine. CNG is similar, but not the same, as the liquid petroleum gas (i.e. 'LPG') which is more commonly found here in Europe.
(We even heard a rumour that NASA sent one up to the International Space Station with that guy Latka from the 'Taxi' TV series, and that it's attached to the other side of the ISS as an emergency 'lifeboat' to return the crew to Earth should the need ever arise. We doubt that can be true, but we haven't seen that guy on TV for a long time, and these Ford Fleet cars are so strong that we do sometimes wonder if these P71s and P72s may be built from recycled and recently-retired space shuttles!)
Flexible Fuel Vehicles (FFV)
From 2008, all 'Police Interceptors' are manufactured with flexible fuel (E85) capability. This means they can operate on BOTH unleaded fuel (i.e. 97 RON), AND also E85 (Biofuel), or any combination of the two.
E85 is a fuel that contains up to 85% ethanol mixed with at least 15% gasoline/unleaded petrol. Ethanol is a derivative of crops such as wheat and maize produced in the USA, Canada and increasingly Europe too. Where available, E85 cuts emissions by 20%-30%. Whether running on ethanol or petrol, the 'Police Interceptor' provides outstanding performance, durability and reliability.
Many American States now have some of the toughest emissions standards in the world. In 2008 Ford achieved 50-state certification for its 'Police Interceptors'. In order to differentiate its flexible fuel vehicles from standard gasoline/petrol vehicles, Ford began equipping all its E-85 capable vehicles with distinctive yellow gas/petrol caps in 2008, so check out our filler caps!