Holden-based Chevrolet Caprice Police vehicle ready for U.S service

August 4th, 2010 by Darren Cottingham

After recently releasing images of the Holden-developed Chevrolet Caprice Police Patrol Vehicle and ‘Detective’ variants last month, GM has now released footage of the WM Statesman-based saloon patroling American streets.

GM has also confirmed that the Detective variant will be offered to enforcement agencies from October this year, and will be delivered to buyers by April 2011. Orders for the Police-liveried Caprice PPV will be taken from October. So far, it’s unknown if any American police departments have placed orders.

The ‘9C1′ PPV was first revealed at Holden’s Port Melbourne headquarters late last year before getting its first US unveiling at the LA Auto Show in December.

The previously unseen 9C3 Detective variant has been developed specifically for use by plain-clothed police and federal agencies. Its mechanical configuration is almost identical to the 9C1 patrol vehicle, the Detective more comfortable seating and cupholders.

Both vehicles receive GM’s 6.0 litre V8, producing 265kW and 384Nm and utilising Active Fuel Management and the petrol- and E85 Ethanol-friendly FlexFuel system.

While the Holden-based vehicles look worthy of replacing the old Ford Crown Victoria in US law-enforcement fleets, the Caprice is just one contender in a competitive field. No decisions have been made yet.

Holden claims that the Los Angeles Police Department has been interested in the WM-platformed Caprice for some time. If the car is selected as the LAPD’s next patrol vehicle, its order alone could total some 20,000 cars.

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Holden Caprice “Action”

December 21st, 2009 by Darren Cottingham

Commercial for Holden Caprice – “Action”. Directed by Mark Toia

Ford developing Police Interceptor vehicle

November 19th, 2009 by Darren Cottingham

Ford Interceptor concept s

Ford has announced plans to replace the aging Crown Victoria Police Interceptor in the States with an all-new model in 2011.

Meant to fix everything that is wrong with the current Crown Vic (slow, cramped, and thirsty), Ford promises the new model will be faster, more fuel-efficient, and safer.

According to Lt. Brian Moran, a fleet manager for the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department and a member of Ford’s Police Advisory Board (which spent 14 months offering suggestion to improve the new model), “Ford’s commitment to the law enforcement community produced the Crown Victoria, the benchmark police vehicle. This commitment has continued, and Ford has been working closely with the Police Advisory Board on developing the new Police Interceptor.

While Ford has typically dominated the law enforcement segment in the US (with roughly 75% of total sales), the redesigned Police Interceptor will face new competition from the recently-announced Chevrolet Caprice Police Patrol Vehicle based on the Holden Commodore.

Holden Statesman joins the Police Force

October 6th, 2009 by Darren Cottingham

Chevrolet Caprice PPV fq1

After recent speculation that the Holden Commodore-based Pontiac G8 might be reborn as a law-enforcement-only vehicle in the States, GM has revealed the 2011 Chevrolet Caprice Police Patrol Vehicle (PPV), based on the Holden Statesman.

Announced at the International Association of Chiefs of Police convention in Colorado, the Caprice PPV will be available from next year, with patrol duties expected to begin in early 2011.

Chevrolet Caprice PPV intInstead of reworking the Holden Commodore-based platform of the retired Pontiac G8, GM has built the Caprice PPV on the longer version of the Zeta platform that underpins the Holden Ute and Statesman.

The cars will be built in Australia at Holden’s assembly plant in Elizabeth, SA, and are set to provide a shot in the arm for the plant’s total output.

“North American law enforcement fleets account for about 70,000 sales a year so securing a fraction of those sales would be a major manufacturing boost for GM’s operations in Australia,” said Holden Executive Director Sales and Marketing, John Elsworth. “Opportunities like this don’t come around very often, so we are working hard to deliver a world class product worthy of serious consideration by the police.”

The 2011 Chevrolet Caprice PPV will be powered by a 6.0 litre LS2 V8 engine developing 265kW and 520Nm of torque, mated to a six-speed automatic Chevrolet Caprice PPV rqtransmission. It’s competitor, Dodge’s law enforcement version of the Charger develops 253kW, and the outgoing Ford Crown Victoria produces a lowly 187kW.

The Caprice PPV is capable of reaching 60mph (96km/h) in under six seconds. A V6-powered version is expected in 2012, and will make use of the SIDI-equipped 3.6 litre engine used by the 2010 VE Commodore.

“The new Chevrolet Caprice police car is the right tool at the right time for law enforcement,” Jim Campbell, general manager for GM Fleet and Commercial Operations said. “We asked for a lot of feedback from our police customers, which helped us develop a vehicle that is superior to the Crown Victoria in key areas.”

Chevrolet Caprice PPV fqAs a vehicle on law-enforcement duties, the Caprice PPV will get a full range of police-specific equipment, including 18-inch steel wheels and heavy-duty four-wheel independent suspension.

The police-specific mechanical list includes a high-output alternator and engine oil, transmission and power steering coolers.

A “police-calibrated stability control system” will also feature in the Caprice PPV. Extra large seats have been fitted to accomodate officers’ gun/equipment belts and also mean an extra donut can be enjoyed care free. It’s good news for American criminals too with the Caprice PPV offering 100mm more leg space in the rear than the outgoing Crown Vic car.

Updated Commodore range awarded top safety rating

August 31st, 2009 by Darren Cottingham

Holden Commodore 2010 fq

The new 2010 Holden Commodore, along with the 2010 Statesman and Caprice, has achieved a 5-Star crash safety rating after tests with the Australasian New Car Assessment Program (ANCAP).

The Commodore achieved its first 5-Star ANCAP rating with the 2009 update to the VE range, after a front passenger seat belt reminder was added and a crumple zone around the steering column to divert harmful impact away from the driver’s knees.

Standard safety features across the Commodore and Statesman range currently includes six airbags and Electronic Stability Control, incorporating Anti-Lock Brakes, Electronic Brakeforce Distribution, Electronic Brake Assist and a Traction Control System.

After the tests the VE Commodore ute has kept its previous 4-Star rating.

The 2010 Commodore and Statesman ranges will be launched in September.

Holden Commodore survives stateside

July 15th, 2009 by Darren Cottingham

Chevrolet Caprice fq

With GM sending the Pontiac brand name to the scrapheap, there was no doubt Holden was nervous, it supplied VE Commodores as Pontiac G8s. Now, according to GM’s Bob Lutz, the plan is to continue offering the VE but rebadged as a Chev Caprice. “The last time we looked at [the G8], we decided that we would continue to import it as a Chevrolet. It is kind of too good to waste.”  Was the comment from Lutz.

As previously reported, there is also a feasibility study going on bassed around weather the cars could also be used as successful law enforcement vehicles to replace the current out dated American fleet. Either way, It looks like Holden Australia are going to have plenty of orders coming in.