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2011 Chevrolet Caprice PPV -– Click above for high-res image gallery

The police vehicle market is flush with new iron from all quarters, making the results of this year's Michigan State Police Vehicle Evaluation hotly anticipated. Ford brought its new Taurus-based Police Interceptor, Chrysler had the 2011 Dodge Charger Police Pursuit model, and General Motors showed up with the Chevrolet Caprice Police Patrol Vehicle. Preliminary results of the performance and dynamics testing put the Caprice PPV on top of its rivals, says GM, but there's a catch.

Chevrolet is touting the unofficial test outcome (final results will be released later this year) as proof of the Caprice PPV's superiority. Being quicker to both 60 and 100 mph and offering shorter stopping distances are performance attributes that officers appreciate, as is a 6.0-liter V8 and a chassis that handled Grattan Raceway with the best average lap time. Thing is, despite the fact that Ford's forthcoming Taurus-based cruiser was on-hand and competed in the tests, GM only compares its new Caprice to the ancient Crown Vic. The reason? The Blue Oval's new PI won't be available for more than a year. According to the blokes at Jalopnik who were on-hand for the shootout, the Caprice was actually bested by the AWD Taurus PI in braking and lap times, but GM has fashioned the 'not available yet' loophole to create victory (nevermind that the Caprice isn't on the streets yet either).

Of course, good performance numbers aren't all there is to police work, or departments would patrol in Corvettes. Chevrolet says the Caprice PPV leads in interior space and thoughtful touches like seats designed to accommodate officers' equipment belts. All of this, GM says, adds up to an open-and-shut case for the Caprice Police Patrol Vehicle. You'd expect no less from a press release (posted after the jump), but clearly, the real victory in the race to replace the Crown Victoria has yet to be determined.

[Sources: General Motors, Jalopnik]

Show full PR text
DETROIT – Law enforcement testing finds the all-new 2011 Chevrolet Caprice Police Patrol Vehicle (PPV) is faster from zero to 60 and zero to 100 miles per hour and brakes in a shorter distance than its competitors from Ford and Dodge.

The performance testing against the 2011 Dodge Charger Police Pursuit police card and the 2011 Ford Crown Victoria Police Interceptor was conducted on Saturday in Chelsea, Mich., and on Monday during a vehicle dynamics comparison at the Grattan Raceway near Belding, Mich., where the Caprice PPV had the best overall average time per lap.

"Police departments around the country told us they needed a modern, high-performance rear-drive pursuit car," said Joyce Mattman, GM Fleet and Commercial Operations product director. "These results are proof that the Caprice PPV delivers the performance officers want, without compromising safety or comfort."

Results from the tests from the Michigan State Police Evaluation Program are considered preliminary. Final results will be published later this year.

"I'm tickled to death to see all of the manufacturers back into (police cars) in a big way after a period of stagnation," said Jerry Newberry, Fleet Manager for the Texas Department of Public Safety, which purchases 900-1,000 vehicles annually. "It's still a work in progress for all manufacturers, but that's been the nice thing in the development of this Caprice – GM is doing what it takes to bring the best car to the market."

The Caprice's 6.0-liter V-8 is rated at an estimated 355 horsepower (265 kW) with 384 lb-ft of torque (521 Nm). It is also backed by a six-speed automatic transmission, which is performance-calibrated for police duty, and standard Stabilitrak electronic stability control. A unique Performance Algorithm Liftfoot (PAL) calibration, within Sport shift mode, allows the transmission to "understand" the driving conditions and select the appropriate gear - even through tight turns - and provides the required engine torque.

With segment leading interior space and sculpted front seats to "pocket" the equipment belt, the Caprice PPV provides maximum comfort for officers, allowing them to effectively do their jobs with minimal back soreness.

Reporting for duty next spring, the Caprice PPV joins the front-wheel drive Impala PPV and Tahoe PPV, making Chevrolet the only manufacturer to offer a full range of police vehicles.

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 4 Years Ago
      Chevy Caprice outperforms, huh? Is that before or after the dubs?
      • 4 Years Ago
      Aside from front seat space, why is interior room such a big deal? I don't care if perpetrators are comfortable. Get nimble, durable cars for pursuit/patrol, then call in a TransitConnect (or something similar, if available) to shuttle them to the jail when necessary.
        • 4 Years Ago
        You mean like the rest of the world does? Only here in the US do cops have such huge cars.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Room is important when trying to stuff a struggling prisoner into the back seat. As for using dedicated transport cars, that just isn't practical -- it would require dedicated a second officer and vehicle to every arrest. Police departments don't have a bunch of extra officers hanging around the station drinking coffee these days.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Just bring it already...
      • 4 Years Ago
      If Ford only continued the Crown Victoria for police sales only, it would not be cost effective. They only sell 30,000 units a year, not enough to justify keeping a dedicated assembly plant open. The average assembly plant can build 100,000+ a year. They would have to continue selling civilian versions and the Town Car in good volume to justify keeping a plant open. The sales of the civilian versions of the Crown Victoria, Grand Marquis and Town Car have dwindled to near nothing compared to others. All three car makers have to base new Police vehicles on platforms that are also sold as civilian vehicles to make it worthwhile from a manufacturing cost standpoint. There are not enough police cars sold each year to have a dedicated plant building them. If the plant can’t be used to maximum manufacturing capacity, there is no business case to do it.
      Big Bird
      • 4 Years Ago
      Government owns GM=winner
      • 4 Years Ago
      ^ So says the ford fan boy with the mustang avatar. LOL
      • 4 Years Ago
      Congrats GM on squeezing yet another dime out of the failed G8.
      • 4 Years Ago
      A paradigm shift must occur for the Taurus to be successful. AWD combined with traction and stability systems is the future and, though it may be slow to accept and painful to transit, this is the direction the police need to take. Pride needs to be set aside and willingness to learn and adapt needs to be accepted.
      Phil Hughes
      • 2 Years Ago
      City Of Clearwater bought two 2011 Hemi Chargers and two 2011 PPV Caprices to outfit them for PD and real world test them. The Chargers have spent more time at the dealer's garage than they have been on the street, they have been a monumental failure, from multiple electrical/electronic malfunctions, (One nuked an ecm with under 3000miles on it) to the weak front end that the strut bushings have already hammered themselves out of the strut arms on both cars with under 12k miles on them. I have to say that the Caprices with the same mileage and level of abuse have not been back to the dealer once. Nothing wil replace the Crown Vic, without a doubt Ford shot themselves in the foot when they discontinued the best Police Car ever concieved, but the clear replacement is the Caprice.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Cops like RWD, just like everybody else. No cop wants a FWD car like the Taurus no matter how much power it makes. The Chargers SUCK as cop cars, Magnums are no better, and the Crown Vic is perfect just dated. GM will clean house on orders for the Caprice, and by Federal law will have to also sell them to the public. GM can say they are LEO, but that just isn't possible. Bring on the Caprice!
        • 4 Years Ago
        A column shifter isn't a necessity as long as there is enough room for a duty belt. The console surrounding the shifter has much more to do with room than just the fact that it is a console shifter.

        As for the Charger sucking, well, the last one sure did and I have almost no hope that anything will change. Call me a pessimist, anti-Dodge, whatever. :)
      • 4 Years Ago
      The steel wheels are too wide. 8" for 235/50 18 is no good.
      7.5", for hopping curbs.
      Otherwise this will be a highway only car.
      • 4 Years Ago
      It is Holden WM Statesman...
      Australia engineering
      But The car is not selling well.
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