straight cash homie
Ford has already claimed that the police verson of the Explorer SUV has become America's new most popular cop car. Now it says it has the numbers to prove it.
Ford sold 14,086 Interceptor SUVs last year, as the police version of the Explorer is known, up 140% from the year before. At the same time, it sold 10,897 Taurus outfitted for police work, up 31% from 2012.
Together, they account for almost half of all police vehicles sold among the major brands -- Dodge, Ford and Chevrolet, according to Ford, which bases its analysis on data from industry statisticians R.L. Polk.
The industry as a whole was up 22% last year. Taurus competes in the police sedan market against Dodge Charger and Chevrolet Caprice. General Motors announced a new Chevrolet SUV in February that will go up against the Explorer. All are trying to fill the gap left by Ford's decision to kill the venerable Crown Victoria sedan, the mainstay of America's police agencies for years.
Ford says it has prospered three ways, according to Jonathan Honeycutt, police marketing manager at Ford:
•The new utility vehicle body is suited to the changing role of police officers, who need to carry more equipment to be ready for any contingency.
•Some 90% of the Interceptors being sold now come with standard all-wheel drive.
•More choices of turbocharged engines are being offered.
"Many officers told us, 'We need more space, but we also need performance'," said Honeycutt in a statement. "We knew with the amount of equipment officers now have to transport that our utility vehicle would be a hit."