The Boys in Blue are getting a lot greener. The New York City Police Department officially deployed a new wave of hybrid vehicles that will make the fleet more fuel-efficient.
“Using hybrid patrol cars will help fulfill our ambitious PlaNYC goal of reducing City government’s carbon footprint. These vehicles use less fuel and emit fewer pollutants into the air we breathe,” said Mayor Michael Bloomberg.
The department began using 30 of a planed 102 Ford Fusion Hybrid vehicles today. The vehicles will be used as patrol cars in all 5 boroughs. The new patrol cars get an EPA-estimated 41-miles per gallon in the city. That is more than double the gas mileage of the current Chevrolet Impala.
The Fusion uses its electric motor for speeds up to 47 M.P.H. before switching to the gasoline engine. The motor uses a regenerative breaking system that recharges the batteries during periods of braking.
But fuel-efficiency is not the only deciding factor behind the NYPD’s selection.
“Safety and performance are our priorities in selecting automobiles for the police fleet. It’s a bonus when we can add outstanding fuel economy to the mix,” said New York City Police Commissioner Raymond W. Kelly.
The departments Fleet Services Division and the Driver Training Unit tested the Fusions before the Fleet Services Division outfitted the vehicle with the specialized equipment required for patrol.
The Ford Fusion hybrids are partly funded through PlaNYC, a program designed to reduce the City’s greenhouse gas emissions by 30 percent before the year 2017. The city has pledged to use 10 percent of its energy budget for the purchase of more hybrids and fuel-efficient patrol vehicles.
The Ford Fusions join the 76 Nissan Altima hybrids already in service as marked alternative fuel patrol cars. The Altima hybrid vehicles were used on patrol during the past year and received positive reviews by officers. With the addition of the Ford Fusions, the NYPD fleet will have more than 400 alternative fuel vehicles on the streets of New York.
The department also uses hybrid vehicles in its parking enforcement fleet, as well as electric scooters and GMC Yukon Hybrid SUVs.