This report presents the results of the 2004 model year Police Vehicle Evaluation, conducted by the Michigan State Police Vehicle Test Team.
Two categories of vehicles were evaluated in 2004: police category vehicles and special service category vehicles. The police category vehicles tested included the Chevrolet Impala 9C1, the Dodge Intrepid, the Ford Police Interceptor (3.27:1), and the Ford Police Interceptor (3.55:1). The special service category vehicles that underwent evaluation were the Ford Explorer (2 wheel drive), the Ford Expedition (4 wheel drive), the Chevrolet Tahoe (2 wheel drive), and the Chevrolet Tahoe (4 wheel drive). Acceleration, top speed, and braking tests were performed at the DaimlerChrysler Proving Grounds and vehicle dynamics testing were performed at the Grattan Raceway. The special service vehicles were not driven through the vehicle dynamics test, which evaluates high-speed handling, because these vehicles are not recommended for high-speed, emergency, or pursuit driving. All vehicles were tested with a clean roof; the addition of overhead lights, spotlights, radio antennas, sirens, and other emergency equipment may affect the overall performance of the vehicles in the field. Vehicles were tested with the tires provided as original equipment; specific tire information is provided. Photographs and descriptions of each police category test vehicle are presented. The methodology and objective of the vehicle dynamics testing is described and results for all police category vehicles are presented in table format. The objective and methodology of the acceleration and top speed testing are described, followed by the results for each vehicle in table format. The brake testing is similarly described, followed by the results for each vehicle. The next two sections of the report present the methodology, objective, and results of the ergonomics and communications evaluation and the fuel economy evaluation of the police category vehicles. A performance comparison is offered for the 2003 and 2004 police category test vehicles in the areas of vehicle dynamics, acceleration, top speed, and braking. Next, descriptions and photographs of the special service vehicles are presented, followed by the results of brake testing and ergonomics and communications testing. The final section presents information about the National Institute of Justice. Results are presented without endorsement of any particular vehicle; decisions regarding police vehicles should be made with the needs of the department in mind. Figures, tables