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A new era in police vehicles rolls into Pleasanton

Original post made on Apr 22, 2014

The Pleasanton Police Department's marked patrol car fleet is transitioning to an entirely new era of police vehicles.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Tuesday, April 22, 2014, 9:00 AM

Comments (37)

Posted by Chas Bell, a resident of Livermore
on Apr 22, 2014 at 10:44 am

A fleet of cars that are maintained properly should last more than 120k miles. There has to be a better use of the money out there than 24 new SUVs...


Posted by Damon, a resident of Foothill Knolls
on Apr 22, 2014 at 10:55 am

@Chas "There has to be a better use of the money out there than 24 new SUVs..."

You live in Livermore. What do you care about how the Pleasanton Police department spends its money? Besides, 120K miles in a police vehicle is not the same as 120K miles going to the grocery market, visits to the mall, or going on weekend trips. Lots more wear-and-tear for the kind of work that a police vehicle often does.


Posted by kbenson, a resident of Bordeaux Estates
on Apr 22, 2014 at 11:35 am

I agree with Chas.

Doing a google search, it appears "stripped down" versions of this vehicle is in the low 30k range.

The current "fleet" 2008-2009? They could replace the drive train(fuel efficient engine), tires and use extra money saved to buy a "fleet" of mountain bikes (for the "fleet" of out of shape officers) They need to put a lot of those guys on the "fat boy" program.
Stop blowing tax payer dollars and invest the money wisely. City officials may start crying when tax payers vote them out of office.


Posted by Cholo, a resident of Livermore
on Apr 22, 2014 at 11:47 am

Unless you ever detail about the cars may I politely suggest that somebody zip it up!

BUSTED!

tee hee...


Posted by Cholo, a resident of Livermore
on Apr 22, 2014 at 11:48 am

Correction: Unless you know every detail about the new vehicles...


Posted by 4.6 Modular V8, a resident of Foothill High School
on Apr 22, 2014 at 4:51 pm

I personally drive two vehicles with the 4.6l modular v8 engine. One of them is the higher 10:1 compression ratio 'PI' head in my mustang GT and one of them is the normal 9:1 230 hp in my expedition. I have never had motor troubles even with 155k on the expedition. Although I have a friend with the 5.4l triton v8 who blew the bottom end of the engine at 33k miles, we've never had problems with our 4.6l.

The police crown vic I have heard uses the 9:1 ratio from the early 2000s models but the newer last generation vic uses the Performance Improvement heads from the mustang (same engine in my mustang.) It's a good motor from the perspective of early 2000s, but technology has come a long ways since then. Although the motor only makes 260 hp, it happens to make 302 ft/lbs of torque which is actually quite good. The new 5.0 makes 412ish hp and 396 ftlbs of torque, so while the hp may have gone up a ton, the torque of the 4.6 still stands out as impressive for its price point. The new engines have more valves and a camshaft for each valvetrain, they are just more efficient.

Also a lot of these new engines are designed to shut off while idling at a stoplight and almost instantly fire up when you try to accelerate again. These engines are specifically designed to do this, it doesn't take all the effort that starting an older engine takes. This has made astronomical changes in gas mileage for newer engines, even BMW'S M3 is using this technology. This will prolong the life of the new motors and save the city a lot of money over a long period of time.

The reason they may only get 120k out of their powertrains without major repairs has to do with the usage that these p71s get. The police idle for long periods of time while waiting for a call or just watching an area. I've heard these vehicles can idle 12hrs a day. Imagine your car idling for that long on a daily basis. This running time is not recorded by the odometer. Idling for a long stretch is not considered healthy operation for the engine, it is better for the powertrain to move through the gears and different loads on the engine but it is what it is. Also imagine what is done to the vehicle during any sort of traffic stop, it has just idled for an hour and now it's slamming redline chasing after a vehicle. When the vehicle being pursued comes to a stop, the crown vic is slammed into park (sometimes while the wheels are still turning) so the police can run out of the vehicle. Also i'm sure they have to slam it into reverse while rolling sometimes. If these vehicles were manual transmissions this probably wouldn't do much other than cause faster clutch wear (easily replaced) but on an automatic transmission this will eventually toast it(more expensive than a clutch.)

I've been eyeballing this new interceptors and remarking on how awesome they are lol. I really like the new style, they look great and perform well too. I do wish they could get a vehicle with the 5.0 instead of the v6, but there is no arguing that the 3.7 is practical :)

Honestly if you know anything about these vehicles, you'll know the police cars are gonna see a hard life. These new vehicles are a good choice. Besides some kid is gonna get one of these old p71s at a police auction for cheap as his first vehicle. When he starts doing stupid burnouts, the city will make money back from the citations the officers hand out lol.


Posted by Damon, a resident of Foothill Knolls
on Apr 22, 2014 at 7:26 pm

@4.6 Modular

Thanks for the insights. Very interesting!


Posted by tim, a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on Apr 23, 2014 at 8:24 am

all govt agencies should be driving chevy volts.


Posted by John, a resident of Pleasanton Valley
on Apr 23, 2014 at 8:28 am

Is 16 - 21 MPG fuel efficient?


Posted by Cholo, a resident of Livermore
on Apr 23, 2014 at 8:41 am

I wish Livermore police had these cars!


Posted by pleasantonwasnice40yearsago, a resident of Del Prado
on Apr 23, 2014 at 8:50 am

I wish people would stop telling others to zip it up when they don't agree.
In america we have the right to our opinion.


Posted by Cool Vehicles, a resident of Birdland
on Apr 23, 2014 at 10:09 am

So sick of everyone complaining about EVERYTHING on these forums! I believe Police and Fire should have the latest technologies in order to keep up with the times. What was good a few years ago may not be as efficient now. I am happy that the police department is keeping their fleet up to date. If they weren't and something went sideways everyone would be complaining that the department should have been keeping up not letting their fleet get run down.....geez people.


Posted by Jim B, a resident of Oak Hill
on Apr 23, 2014 at 10:23 am

Police cars are driven entirely different than personal vehicles. All the miles are street miles with multiple stop and go's. There is no freeway driving. this means the engines run hotter. Generally, there is less transmission shifting and RPM changes on a car that is mostly highway driven. Whereas, in the city, you are constantly starting and stopping, which in turn will cause more wear of parts. In addition, considering there's alot more potholes and bumps during city driving than highway driving, the suspension takes a beating and there is more wear, and tear.

Think of it this way ... drive 150 miles on the highway, and you use the breaks a few times. Drive 20 miles in stop and go traffic, you hit the brakes a hundred times, the shocks get exercised, the transmission is shifting constantly and the engine runs hot . 120K miles on a police car is reaching end of life.

Pleasanton is a wealthy town and we have a great police force........give them new vehicles.


Posted by liberalism is a disease, a resident of Birdland
on Apr 23, 2014 at 12:59 pm

liberalism is a disease is a registered user.

The new vehicles apprea to be a vast upgrade from the traditional cruisers. It certainly wouldn't be cost effective to try to retrofit the old vehicles, so that suggestion is ludicris. Just like replacing our old, functional street lights with LED's, this cost saving move will save money now and into the future.
I had to laugh at the Chevy Volt suggestion. I understand it was in jest, but you can imagine a police chase with those silly wind-up cars being passed like they are standing still, then running out of juice and leaving the officer stranded while the perps get away. Hilarious suggestion....


Posted by Stella, a resident of Downtown
on Apr 23, 2014 at 1:43 pm

I like the SUV's--they can't hide in tall grass to easy...........


Posted by Bob12, a resident of Pleasanton Meadows
on Apr 23, 2014 at 2:30 pm

Most cabs are used Crown Vic Police cars. They re-paint them and put another 100k miles or more on them. And cabbies are rough on their vehicles too. I can understand "wanting" new SUV type vehicles, but today's cars even in high use are not worn out at 120k.


Posted by Cholo, a resident of Livermore
on Apr 23, 2014 at 2:54 pm

I plan to drop in on the PPD and ask if I can go along for a short spin!


Posted by Eric, a resident of Val Vista
on Apr 23, 2014 at 3:05 pm

To all of you na sayers. Have any of you gone on a ride along and see what an officer puts a car through. If not shut up. At 120k miles a police car is worn out,not just the engine but the trans,and most importantly the suspension to bring these items up to safe standards would cost more than the car is worth If you don't believe me price it yourself on some of the car parts websites then figure the labor rate at $175.00 per hour as a min. You'll find it's cheaper to buy new cars than repair worn out cars.


Posted by David, a resident of Pleasanton Meadows
on Apr 24, 2014 at 11:25 am

I drove a patrol car for 20+ years. Besides the pursuits and code 3 runs, the real wear and tear comes from the hours on each vehicle's engine.

Most patrol cars run 23 hours a day, or 8,395 hours per year. Patrol cars average about 50,000 hours of runtime before coming off the line. So while it seems unreasonable to replace them on the surface, it's really not. Unmarked units assigned to detectives etc often stay in service for over 10 years. Also, most patrol cars taken out of service are used as training vehicles or cannibalized for parts.

I know from experience that you don't want worn-out cars being used as your front line response vehicles.

That being said, chases are a thing of the past, with the exception of a violent offender (Maybe) and most agencies should move to hybrids for patrol and have wagons for transport and a few intercept vehicles for proactive traffic.

The gas savings would be astronomical.


Posted by Bob12, a resident of Pleasanton Meadows
on Apr 24, 2014 at 11:56 am

Bob12 is a registered user.

Reply to comment by David. Thanks David for your comments, they all made sense. But again I come to today's reality of cars lasting much longer than they used to. Again many Crown Vic's released from Police duty end up being repainted as Taxi's and then used for another 100k miles plus and they get hard use and lots of idling time too. And these are facts.
------- David's comments below ----------

Posted by David, a resident of Pleasanton Meadows
14 minutes ago

I drove a patrol car for 20+ years. Besides the pursuits and code 3 runs, the real wear and tear comes from the hours on each vehicle's engine.

Most patrol cars run 23 hours a day, or 8,395 hours per year. Patrol cars average about 50,000 hours of runtime before coming off the line. So while it seems unreasonable to replace them on the surface, it's really not. Unmarked units assigned to detectives etc often stay in service for over 10 years. Also, most patrol cars taken out of service are used as training vehicles or cannibalized for parts.

I know from experience that you don't want worn-out cars being used as your front line response vehicles.

That being said, chases are a thing of the past, with the exception of a violent offender (Maybe) and most agencies should move to hybrids for patrol and have wagons for transport and a few intercept vehicles for proactive traffic.

The gas savings would be astronomical.


Posted by Mike, a resident of Gatewood
on Apr 25, 2014 at 7:15 am

Bob 12

It appears that you have not ridden in a taxi. The ones that use the a used police Crown Vic are terrible. The ride is rough and the interior is terrible. I spoke to an officer about the licensing of such vehicles and she told me that a lot of them fail inspection. The owners make some "makeshift" repairs and they put them back on the road to drive the public around.

A lot of the more reputable taxi companies are using "newer" used cars such as the Toyota Prius, some mini vans, and other types of mid size vehicles. When I use a taxi I don't use a company that only has used police Crown Vics


Posted by Green, a resident of Bonde Ranch
on Apr 25, 2014 at 8:18 am

Pleasanton is a liberal environmentally friendly town and I wish the city would paint them a bright to show our character.


Posted by right, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Apr 25, 2014 at 10:41 am

Of course, green, you are speaking only of yourself and your small circle of the liberal elite. You are free to paint your electric clown car any color you like, but do you really think anyone would take a police officer seriously if he or she rolled up in a neon green toy car like the one you drive? Get a grip...this is not now, nor will it ever be Berserkely.


Posted by Green, a resident of Bonde Ranch
on Apr 25, 2014 at 11:24 am

Nothing wrong with Berkeley. As a matter if fact we moved here from Berkeley a couple of years back and love the town. You would be surprised how many people have moved here from Berkeley in the past few years. Pleasanton has the makings of a nice town with a few chances that I am sure will come in the near future.

Regarding the police? Well in my view they are not be feared unless you are some right wing control freak but should be considered one with the community. Dublin already has green and white police cars so we wouldn't be the first.

"Commitment to protect people and the environment" should be on the side.

I also think they should have gotten hybrid SUV's instead of those gas guzzling Ford which are made in Canada, Mexico, or China. I do not understand why the city doesn't set a better example.


Posted by Green, a resident of Bonde Ranch
on Apr 25, 2014 at 11:24 am

Nothing wrong with Berkeley. As a matter if fact we moved here from Berkeley a couple of years back and love the town. You would be surprised how many people have moved here from Berkeley in the past few years. Pleasanton has the makings of a nice town with a few chances that I am sure will come in the near future.

Regarding the police? Well in my view they are not be feared unless you are some right wing control freak but should be considered one with the community. Dublin already has green and white police cars so we wouldn't be the first.

"Commitment to protect people and the environment" should be on the side.

I also think they should have gotten hybrid SUV's instead of those gas guzzling Ford which are made in Canada, Mexico, or China. I do not understand why the city doesn't set a better example.


Posted by Right, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Apr 25, 2014 at 6:44 pm

Green, thanks for confirming our suspicions about your Berserkely roots. It was as apparent as the tie dyed tee shirts the drugged out retired hippies wear.
Most people don't fear the police, nor should they. What they must do is respect the police, which is impossible if they are driving around in clown cars with colors that look like they belong on the carousel at the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk.
The city doesn't need underpowered and unreliable hybrids, just to make you feel good about yourself.
Police work is serious business; stop trivializing and politicizing it.


Posted by Green, a resident of Bonde Ranch
on Apr 25, 2014 at 7:28 pm

Right, people like you are what's wrong with this town. No concern for others opinions only yours. Police in many locations don't drive something out of the streets of San Francisco for all these high pursuit chases in town. Things need to be calmer and police need to be humanized and not made out to be those weird SWAT guys. They are to be serving us right not threatening us with their guns and clubs. I do not think they should armed in this town.


Posted by Right, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Apr 27, 2014 at 9:25 pm

Ok, green, in defer to your utopian view of the world. I think it's quant that you, like the amateur in chief, see the world the way you think it should be, versus the reality the rest of us live in. If I'm what's wrong with this town, I suppose in the 30 years I've lived here, it should be really screwed up, eh? Why did you migrate here , if it's so terrible?
Did you hear this was a good place to grow your stash? Or, maybe you had a better chance of not having your stash stolen by those who prey on folks that use large quantities of mind altering substances.

Whatever your reasons for invading our town, don't delude yourself into thinking you will change the policies or procedures the police follow to apprehend criminals, like drug offenders. Now, I understand why you find them threatening....if you would only follow the law, you wouldn't have to carry around your irrational fear. I'm sad for you and hope you find peace in another city, far away.


Posted by Max, a resident of Stoneridge
on May 18, 2014 at 7:13 pm

New fleet of cars for police. Why are they so ugly looking, black color, big with 10,000 blue-red lights on them?
I wonder this means more traffic tickets for Pleasanton residents to pay for those new cars.
We don't need SWAT looking police cars. They need to be reminded they are public servant after all!
We need them to drive bright color cars, small cars (Prius) maybe even bicycles. This is not Oakland justifying having those mean looking big cars.


Posted by Damon, a resident of Foothill Knolls
on May 19, 2014 at 1:10 pm

@ Max: "I wonder this means more traffic tickets for Pleasanton residents to pay for those new cars.
We don't need SWAT looking police cars. They need to be reminded they are public servant after all!
We need them to drive bright color cars, small cars (Prius) maybe even bicycles."

It's going to be fun watching our police bicycling after Cody Hall when he gets out of jail and starts doing 83 mph on Foothill again!


Posted by Get the Facts, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 19, 2014 at 5:22 pm

Get the Facts is a registered user.

Max, do you realize that the money collected does not go to the police department? My research shows that fines go to the state or to the general fund, not to police departments themselves.

Priuses? Bicycles? Are you kidding? So many tall cars on the road, they need to be in tall cars to see in, over, and around other cars. This was long overdue, I'm surprised it hasn't happened yet.

Does anyone know if they have dashboard cameras in the fleet? Last I asked (many years ago) they did not. That too seems overdue.


Posted by Epic Fail, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 19, 2014 at 9:55 pm

The Police just changed all the cars less than 5 years ago from the mostly plain cars to the striped Adam 12 style cars.

Now, with the Pleasanton Police souped up SUVs riding up and down the streets, it is not only a waste of taxpayer money, but it makes it appear that our community police force are a bunch of Secret Service wannabes.

I'd like to know if the mayor and city council approved these wasteful expenditures or whether the changeover just happened.

Next will come the earpieces and pervasive dark sunglasses.


Posted by Voltmeister, a resident of Del Prado
on May 20, 2014 at 10:35 am

@ Right and LibDis - you obviously have never driver a Chevy Volt. It is an exceptionally well made car, manufactured here in the good old US of A. It would be a good solution for many of the public sector vehicles, even a portion of the police vehicles, where your somewhat mythical high speed pursuits are not required. If we need high speed pursuit vehicles, then we could supplement the Volts with a couple of Teslas.

The Volt gets up to 50 miles per charge, then switches over to its onboard internal combustion engine to go an additional 350 miles on a tank of gas. So the total range is close to 400 miles with a total charge and full tank of gas. When running on the ICE, the Volt gets around 45 MPG. Think of the fuel savings and the dollars we would be taking out of the pockets of the Middle East despots and bad guys.

The Volt is not slow, nor is it a wind-up toy car. I would challenge you to a little drag race in any ICE car you choose. Think instant acceleration versus having an ICE rev and have to switch through multiple gears. The Volt comes with all the electronic bells and whistles found in high end sports and luxury cars.

Switching to Volts for public sector vehicles would be a huge win for taxpayers, the environment, and even our national security by reducing our dependence on foreign oil.

p.s. I have not purchased gas since December, commuting over 50 miles per day. My electricity comes from solar arrays at my home and work. How much have you spent on gas since December, hmmm?


Posted by @green, a resident of Ruby Hill
on May 20, 2014 at 5:40 pm

San Francisco once attempted to "soften" the image of the police force with powder blue and white cop cars. It was a total disaster... let's not repeat that mistake!


Posted by D, a resident of another community
on May 22, 2014 at 5:45 am

Why does EVERYONE complain so much in this town? Pleasanton residents COMPLAIN about EVERYTHING. Pleasanton is known for its whiners.


Posted by Jim, a resident of Stoneridge
on Jun 1, 2014 at 12:08 pm

San Francisco once attempted to "soften" the image of the police force with powder blue and white cop cars. It was a total disaster... let's not repeat that mistake!

What a bunch of baloney!
If cops are competent, they should be able to do their job in soft color car versus SWAT looking car.
End of day, they get paid to be peace makers not terminators!


Posted by Paul, a resident of Castlewood
on Jun 1, 2014 at 4:48 pm

(Post removed by Pleasanton Weekly Online staff for containing unverified or personal information.)


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