Californian Cops Outfit Tesla Model S as Future-Friendly Police Cruiser

Discussion in 'HardForum Tech News' started by Megalith, Jan 27, 2019.

  1. Megalith

    Megalith 24-bit/48kHz Staff Member

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    Fremont Police may be the first police department in the US with a Tesla in its fleet. The agency, which already owns a party of “unorthodox police vehicles” that includes Ford F-150s, purchased the used 2014 Tesla Model S 85D last year for $61,478.50 and has been modifying it for duty since: additions include an overhead lightbar, armored door panels, and push bumper. It’s part of Fremont’s mission to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions by 25 percent next year.

    Modifications to ready the Tesla for police service exceed the price of a Ford Explorer-based Police Interceptor Utility, but Fremont projects the combined price and running costs of said Ford over the average police cruiser's service life of five years to exceed that of the Tesla's preparation cost. Electricity to charge the Tesla will come at no cost to Fremont, as the department has 872 kilowatts worth of solar power at its headquarters.
     
  2. Cactusj

    Cactusj n00b

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    It would be easy to outrun as long as you were on a highway that would allow you to drive over 100. In a residential area, good luck...
     
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  3. Joust

    Joust 2[H]4U

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    Remember that scene in Tokyo Drift, "If you can do over 150km/h, they won't even try..."

    Now: "If you're can go over 100 km, they won't even try...."
     
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  4. Jim Kim

    Jim Kim 2[H]4U

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    Top speed 155, can't outrun the radio.
     
  5. B770

    B770 [H]Lite

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    61 grand for a 2014?? wtf... sounds like a scam to me
    just looked up used 2018 tesla s and they go for 60-65 grand......
     
  6. Zarathustra[H]

    Zarathustra[H] Official Forum Curmudgeon

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    Yeah, I was researching these a year ago, hoping to get a deal on a used Model S. Turns out they hold their value much better than they should. In the end I decided it wasn't worth it.
     
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  7. Zarathustra[H]

    Zarathustra[H] Official Forum Curmudgeon

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    Look, I'd love to drive a Model S.

    I just don't think it would make for a very good police car...
     
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  8. pcgeekesq

    pcgeekesq [H]ard|Gawd

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    "Electricity to charge the Tesla will come at no cost to Fremont, as the department has 872 kilowatts worth of solar power at its headquarters."

    Stupid. The cost of obtaining and installing the solar cells has to be amortized, and the maintenance costs.
    Nothing last forever, and electricity is never free.
     
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  9. Joust

    Joust 2[H]4U

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    Nonsense. Perpetual motion machine, ftw!
     
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  10. ecuador

    ecuador Limp Gawd

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    Eh, the Tesla Model S P85D does 100km/h in just 2.8s from zero and has a max speed of 155 mph. That's about 250 km/h... Under what definition is that slow???
     
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  11. Joust

    Joust 2[H]4U

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    I think perhaps you missed my point.
     
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  12. ecuador

    ecuador Limp Gawd

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    They already have them, they just found a way to use them, in that sense it is free. Because I have a 10kW roof that's in its 7th year now, I have to tell you that there are virtually no maintenance costs and my roof covered its cost a year ago (sunny region, grid connected), while it is warrantied for 25 years...
     
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  13. ecuador

    ecuador Limp Gawd

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    Ah, I thought you missed an /h there. But you were talking about distance. Well, OK, you exaggerated - the P85D has a range of 400 km, which I am sure will be much shorter in a pursuit, but still not close to 100 km, so I missed your point ;)
    I got it now :)
    (still the Tesla would have caught up quickly compared to other police cruisers though).

    PS. What would be very interesting would be situations where a Tesla would need to ram or push a car off the road. At 5000 lbs and a low center of mass I bet it would be a much better instrument than most other cars...
     
  14. Anarchist4000

    Anarchist4000 [H]ard|Gawd

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    That may include modifications. Armoring the door, added bumper, etc may increase the cost a bit.

    Doesn't account for selling it back to the grid or using for something else like office lighting.

    Keep in mind top speed likely isn't as important as acceleration. Sitting next to a highway, going 0-60+ rather quickly to catch someone safely may be more important. Tesla's accelerate better than most vehicles on the road. Using the battery over idling the engine to power electronics may be advantageous as well. Interesting study nonetheless.
     
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  15. pcgeekesq

    pcgeekesq [H]ard|Gawd

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    Even if Santa Claus gave them the panels and the Tooth Fairy is doing all the maintenance, it's still not free because of opportunity cost. They could be selling that electricity. Whatever they could make by selling it is the money they are losing by using it to power their electric car. That's real money lost, a real cost.
    Therefore, the electricity is not free.
     
  16. Dead Parrot

    Dead Parrot 2[H]4U

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    While pursuits get all the views, most cop car miles are spent going from "Suspected shoplifter at Walmart" to "Domestic at ...." to "Report of mad dog at" to lunch to etc. Basically the type of stop and go traffic that plays to an EV's strengths. If they wind up in a long high speed pursuit, a quick radio call and they will have plenty of help before the batteries run out.

    Might also be pretty good at sneaking up on the suspect without them hearing the rumble of that police interceptor muffler.

    Given the price of Cali gas, the solar electricity has to be a savings.
     
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  17. CombatChrisNC

    CombatChrisNC [H]ard|Gawd

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    Someone's done the study I'm sure that the great great great great majority of the time, a town cop car isn't involved in a high speed pursuit.

    Even if one is, I'm sure the great great majority of any of the 'high speed' chases last less than 20 miles.

    Most of this is going to be ruitine calls for domestic disturbances or speed traps that have caught the speeder in an uneventful 60 seconds.

    AND not all excess electricity can be sold back at market rates. It really sucks in some locations, I don't know their details.
     
  18. Dadebraafsie

    Dadebraafsie n00b

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    "Electricity to charge the Tesla will come at no cost to Fremont, as the department has 872 kilowatts worth of solar power at its headquarters."

    while the US grid runs for 75 percent or more on combustible resources , production and decommisioning of such cars and solar panels is actually "pretty green"

    i guess ignorance is bliss here
     
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  19. nutzo

    nutzo [H]ardness Supreme

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    So they will use solar to charge the car, and instead have to pay to replace the solar power that's no longer available for the office.

    Complete marketing spin.
     
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  20. nutzo

    nutzo [H]ardness Supreme

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    Given the high price of electricity in California, they will not be saving much over the high gas prices.
     
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  21. Tsumi

    Tsumi [H]ardForum Junkie

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    The additional things will lower its range due to increased weight and higher drag. A Tesla is not good in endurance situations though, as the batteries will overheat and performance quickly drops off after a few quick acceleration and deceleration events.
     
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  22. BloodyIron

    BloodyIron 2[H]4U

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    Why not? They have mad acceleration, mad handling, they're the safest car you can buy, you can refuel them anywhere, and they run nearly silently. They're a great addition to the fleet, even if they have some downsides to them.

     
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  23. BloodyIron

    BloodyIron 2[H]4U

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    If the power to recharge the car comes from their own solar panels, how is that not green exactly?

     
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  24. Lakados

    Lakados [H]ard|Gawd

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    As a long distance chase car, no. But as a quick pursuit or general interceptor hell yea. Ford's own estimates put daily average distance driven to be in the low 100's meaning it really isn't an issue and the police pay far less for electricity even from the general grid than they do for standard fuel, so even worst case and they are buying 100% of their juice from the grid they still probably save a bunch. Additionally if this does work out I wonder what Tesla would be charging the police for a factory done car? I can't imagine it would be much more than Ford charges for theirs, and if the maintenance costs do come out lower over a 5-10 year stretch for the Tesla than really it's a win for everybody.

    Besides, Tesla could use the business and Ford needs a kick in the pants they have been lazy and it shows.
     
  25. haste.

    haste. [H]ard|Gawd

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    The electricity is not free but it is possible for break even. If purchase and depreciation cost was properly accounted in comparison to former costs as well as potential credit they could be technically profiting.
     
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  26. haste.

    haste. [H]ard|Gawd

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    Reading goes a long way to not making odd comments... solar panels owned by the station are generating the electricity.
     
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  27. pcgeekesq

    pcgeekesq [H]ard|Gawd

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    And what were those solar panels powering before the electric cop cars existed?
    Where they up there for show?
    Or where they powering the station, which will have to now buy more power off the grid to make up for the solar power used to charge the cars?
    And how are the solar panels going to charge the cars at night, for the cops who have shifts during the day? Or do you think power storage batteries last forever?

    The "solar is free" nonsense is just media spin, which only the ignorant will buy.
    If these cars make economic sense, it's at the price of electricity sold to the station, solar panels or not.

    On related news, Bill Gates is offering $1 billion of his own money plus $1 billion dollars of other private capital to build next-gen nuclear power plants.
    Now if we can just get the ignorant pseudo-green wackjobs to not use lawsuits to delay the nuke plants into the 22nd century, maybe we can get a little progress on that climate-change thing.
     
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  28. Jtal

    Jtal n00b

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    How long does it take to recharge the car using their solar panels?

    Most patrol cars are on duty 16-24 hours a day, they just keep switching out the crews.

    Will this car be limited to one shift per day?

    Can it even handle a full 8 hour shift?
     
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  29. travisty

    travisty Gawd

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    Wow you have no idea how solar works do you? In California, if they use all the generated power, they'll have the solar panels (including install cost) paid for in about five years time. Also there is no maintenance for panels. The parts are made to last 25 years (and do last that long and longer). At most the inverter will need to be replaced every 10-15 years at a few grand in cost which will be paid for in a year
     
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  30. travisty

    travisty Gawd

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    If the driving distance is less than 300 miles then it can last a shift or a day. Solar panels are tied to the grid so that is not the only power source. With level 2 charging they can get about 30-40 miles an hour. If a super chargers is installed they can get to 90% charge in half an hour
     
  31. travisty

    travisty Gawd

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    If the solar panels have been up for more than 5 years in CA they will have paid for themselves. All the electricity after that, in my mind, can be called free.
    Solar panels are tied to the grid. When they are producing in the middle of the day, any excess power is 'deposited' and at night any extra power can then be 'withdrawn' at no cost until there is no more 'funds' at which point electricity is sold at the standard rate. OC the power company wins as the middle day electricity is more valuable than the night electricity.

    FYI all your 'where' should be 'were'
     
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  32. mashie

    mashie Mawd Gawd

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    I'm not sure I would aim to ram other cars if I was sitting on a massive battery that may or may not catch fire in the process.
     
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  33. Incontentia Buttocks

    Incontentia Buttocks [H]Lite

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    So 66 mph? I think you misread and assumed metric where it's not.
     
  34. kju1

    kju1 2[H]4U

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    Under a Tesla haters one. Though to be honest I am not sure its the best choice of a police vehicle...BUT it is a concept car for them. So everyone who is ragging on it should realize that but they probably dont care...its stupid to them so why even try right?

    That being said: Its not a slow car, but I dont see it in long chases. Not that the cops do those anymore. BUT even if they did you cant outrun radio...or a helicopter. Or an electric powered motorcycle ;)
     
  35. kju1

    kju1 2[H]4U

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    Have you heard of super charging???
     
  36. BSmith

    BSmith [H]ard|Gawd

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    About the acceleration. I have a friend who owns an S and he said you can flog it for about 30 minutes before it goes into cool down mode where it accelerates at about the pace of a Prius. He also said during that 30 minute flogging you can use almost half of your charge up. It is a lot of fun when it has not been flooged around.

    I think the only why they are going to be practical as police cars is for the police station to substantially increase the number of cars in the fleet so they can be rotated out more frequently. There is no way to insure a car will have enough charge to do a full eight hour shift. Simply due to the charge times, they cannot be ready for another eight hour shift in less than 5 minutes it takes to fill a car with gas.

    The tax burden could be substantial, considering the initial outlay is more than double (depending on what models the comparison would be made to) what the ICE version of the police car would be. Not enough data to assess what the long term costs of ownership might be.

    It is an interesting exercise. I hope they keep good data and make it publicly available.
     
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  37. N4CR

    N4CR 2[H]4U

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    Can and have multiple times. What the radio can't see it doesn't know.
     
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  38. Joust

    Joust 2[H]4U

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    The joke. You missed it.
     
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  39. kju1

    kju1 2[H]4U

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    Maybe it shouldve been 88MPH ;)
     
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  40. Zumino Zufeilon

    Zumino Zufeilon Gawd

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    good god, I love all the posturing in this post.

    It's a first-adopter mindset. Is it going to work 100% of the time? Of course not. Is it going to be a great learning experience, and done in a way that is pretty much cost-neutral? Damn right.

    Let them experiment. There will be lessons learned, but all of the posturing blow-hards in here are hilarious because most of you don't even know how solar ACTUALLY works, nor how police cars are used on a regular basis.

    This is a first crack at it. Before predicting "It's all a waste", let them fucking try.