2011 Dodge Charger Pursuit police vehicleEnlarge Photo
We all knew the 2011 Dodge Charger would be restyled. Now Chrysler has issued the first factory photo of the new model, decked out in full police pursuit gear.
The new styling--the press release actually calls it "sinister"--should neatly toughen up the Dodge Charger's credentials as one of the few remaining rear-wheel-drive V-8 engined full-size sedans offered in the U.S. market.
For police use, the 2011 Charger Pursuit has upgraded suspension, including heavy-duty brakes, stabilizer bars both front and rear, 18-inch steel wheels with performance tires, and two police-only calibrations in the car's Electronic Stability Control system.
The standard engine is the company's new 3.6-liter Pentastar V-6, though we suspect any police department will order as many as possible with the optional 5.7-liter Hemi V-8.
The larger engine now comes with a Multi-Displacement System to shut off fuel to unneeded cylinders during light duty, improving the gas mileage when power is used sparingly. Which will depend entirely on the officer at the wheel.
Other police-specific equipment includes a standard interface module to integrate the variety of police electronics now required in any car, front seats specifically reinforced for police duty, a column shifter to open up floor and console space, and--our favorite feature--interior lighting in red and white LEDs that makes using night-vision equipment much easier.
Chrysler's updated police sedan faces an onslaught of competitors--the Chevy Caprice Police Patrol Vehicle, the Ford Taurus Police Interceptor, and the purpose-built Carbon E7 sedan interceptor--as the classic Ford Crown Victoria heads toward extinction and manufacturers vie to break Ford's grip on the police market.