The Fremont Police Department recently put two new F-150 pickups into its rotation as patrol vehicles, but that won't be the car that turns heads. Leave that to the station's new Tesla Model S 85.
Fremont police picked up the used 2014 Tesla last year and is now outfitting the vehicle to meet officer requirements. Among the items being added to the new car are the partition cage, sirens and lights, push bumper, ballistic barriers, equipment console and more, the department said.
The purchase of the electric vehicle is just one part of Fremont's clean technology and smart city initiatives, Capt. Sean Washington said in a statement.
"Given that Fremont Police vehicle fleet is responsible for a total of 980 metric tons of carbon dioxide emissions annually, this program has the potential to eliminate 10 percent of all municipal greenhouse gas emissions," Washington said. Fremont is looking to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions by 25 percent by 2020, with its goals set via a 2005 baseline.
The car will set Fremont PD back just over $65,000, once the modifications are complete, but the department is hoping it will make up for the cost in other ways.
Comparatively, the department said that its Ford Explorer SUVs cost about $40,000 to modify. Gas, for instance, can cost about $32,000 during the average five-year lifespan of a police vehicle, not to mention maintenance, which can cost about $15,000.
The department is hoping that the Tesla will outlive that traditional lifespan, while delivering in both a sustainable and overall cost-effective way in the long run.
Fremont PD will be soliciting feedback on the car from officers who drive vehicle, looking at the car's performance, costs, range and use while out in the field.
Other police departments in the United States have purchased Teslas, as the San Jose Mercury News reported, but it seems that those vehicles have never made it into patrol. The Los Angeles Police Department purchased a Model S in 2016, which never made it into its rotation of patrol cars; the Denver Police also purchased a Model S, but has relegated it to use for community outreach events.
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