Ford has been synonymous with police vehicles for a long time, from the Crown Victoria days of old to modern SUVs. They’ve taken their law enforcement game up to a whole new level, however, with the latest Interceptor, which is a jazzed up 2020 Ford Explorer that includes numerous features making it ideal for police work. The all-new Explorer is already impressive on its own, but the Interceptor upgrades go even further and include more safety features.
Perhaps the most impressive aspect of the 2020 Ford Police Interceptor is the fact that it comes standard with a hybrid engine. Ford has pulled out all the stops with this engine; however, so it still provides impressive performance and handles beautifully while reducing gas consumption substantially. Better yet, the hybrid engine is ideal for law enforcement, since police officers spend so much time stationary while on the job. The electrical systems of the Interceptor run off the electric battery so police officers can do their jobs without the motor running, and occasional use to go from place to place keeps the battery charged.
Performance with the new 2020 Ford Explorer Police Interceptor is equally impressive, with very responsive brakes and top speeds of up to 137 mph with the standard hybrid engine. And the aforementioned safety features make for a rock-solid total package.
The Hybrid Engine
One of the slickest aspects of the new 2020 Ford Police Interceptor is the fact that it comes with a hybrid engine standard. This is a fourth-generation hybrid engine from Ford, which will actually be available on the consumer version of the 2020 Ford Explorer. It’s a 3.3L V6 that offers a combined 318 hp and 322 lb-ft of torque for exceptional performance from a hybrid engine. Testing so far has shown this engine has a top speed of 137 mph and goes from 0-60 in just 7.8 seconds.
Hybrid engines are actually ideal for police work since law enforcement officers tend to spend a lot of time not “in action.” They are often parked, watching for trouble, filing reports, or providing information and support to other officers in the field. During this time, the 2020 Ford Police Interceptor can keep electrical systems, including communications and computer equipment, running off the lithium-ion battery. As long as the vehicle is used occasionally to recharge the battery, a police officer can do his or her job without burning excess fuel.
Other Engine Options
Just in case that’s not good enough for any particular police department, however, there is also an available 3.0L turbocharged EcoBoost V6 engine, which provides up to 400 hp and 415 lb-ft of torque for even better performance. This engine will also be available in the 2020 Ford Explorer for us non-police folks, thanks to the all-new high-performance ST trim level.
With the non-hybrid engine, police testers in Michigan were able to get up to 149 mph and went from 0-60 in only 5.8 seconds. This engine is a beast and the fact that we’ll be able to try it out in the consumer model is pretty exciting, though something tells me it won’t perform quite as well as the Police Interceptor. Either way, cops in the 2020 model will definitely be able to keep up with anything going on around them.
Those who have driven the Interceptor version of the 2020 Ford Explorer have also reported that it has some of the most responsive brakes they’ve ever felt. The brakes are large and they mean business: since the torque on this SUV gets it going so fast, Ford designer’s felt it needed to be able to stop just as fast – especially for police officers. Makes sense to me.
The overall design goal was also to let police officers brake fairly late in response to a situation and still have the brakes do their job. In fact the brakes have special ducts specifically designed to help keep them cool, so they can keep on working for a long time without failure. They will be able to take a lot of abuse, and as police officers get used to them, they’ll no doubt appreciate the fact that they can easily respond and adapt to pretty much any road condition or situation.
Police officers often have to be able to go pretty much anywhere they possibly can with their vehicles to respond to an emergency, and the 2020 Interceptor is clearly designed with that in mind. It rides on unique Goodyear Eagle Enforcer tires on steel wheels that can jump an 8-inch curb and keep on going. That is a definite “don’t try that at home” situation, so don’t expect to see the standard 2020 Ford Explorer have wheels like that.
Trying to hop an 8-inch curb in the consumer model will likely have a bad ending for you and your Explorer (not to mention an expensive one). Though the aftermath of such an attempt might result in you getting to see the 2020 Police Interceptor up close, so maybe that’s a positive? I still say just don’t do it.
Higher Crash Rating
One of my absolute favorite things about the 2020 Ford Police Interceptor SUV is how Ford has focused on giving police officers more safety features to let them do their jobs and come home at the end of their shift. Safety features are important to me on any vehicle – after all, these are pieces of machinery that weigh thousands of pounds and are hurled along at speeds that push the limits of human reaction times. Given the types of situations, cops find themselves in; however, it’s good to see them get a little extra protection.
The biggest safety feature unique to the 2020 Interceptor, compared to the 2020 Ford Explorer for consumers, is that it has a higher rear-impact crash rating. The standard for all vehicles required by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) is that they must be able to endure a rear-end collision from a vehicle traveling at 50 mph. For the Interceptor, however, Ford has gone a step further and ensured it can handle an impact from a vehicle going at 75 mph. That is perfect for highway patrol and other police officers who frequently stop on freeways, where they all-too-often get slammed into by distracted or intoxicated drivers.
Other Safety Features
The 2020 Police Interceptor also has great safety features such as pre-collision assist and pedestrian detection, which you can find available on the standard 2020 Ford Explorer too. Unique to the Interceptor model, however, are additional features such as an on-demand rear camera. The Interceptor has a typical rearview camera; however, a police officer can push a button to turn that camera on and see behind the vehicle. In standard versions of the Explorer and other vehicles, the rear camera only comes on when the vehicle is in reverse.
There is also a Police Perimeter Alert function in the vehicle available from the factory. This system uses the blind spot information sensors to monitor 270-degrees of area around the vehicle. It analyzes movement and motion of anyone detected by the system and can actually determine if someone’s movements are potentially threatening or aggressive. The system then provides a visual display in the instrument cluster to notify officers of movement, with an audible alert when threatening behavior is detected – automatically rolling up windows, locking doors, and activating the rear view camera when this happens.
I know most people get tense and nervous when they see a cop car on the road, even when they’ve done nothing wrong. But it’s going to be tough not being at least a little excited to see the impressive 2020 Ford Explorer Police Interceptor rolling by, looking hot!