Not long after police in California started experimenting with a Tesla Model S police cruiser, an (unofficial) prototype police-spec Model 3 has been shown off during the annual Accelerate Policing conference in Phoenix, Arizona.
Images of the car first surfaced on Twitter and Reddit and it only takes a quick glimpse at the vehicle to realize that it isn’t an official police car used by any police department in the United States. Instead, it is thought to have been created by Axon and police car equipment manufacturer Tomar.
Changes made to the exterior of the electric sedan include a matte grey and white wrap, a large ‘police’ sticker, flashing lights on the wing mirrors, and 20-inch aftermarket wheels. The electric sedan lacks a traditional light bar on its roof and instead features flashing lights in the interior at the top of the windscreen.
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It is difficult to say if the Model 3 will ever be used by police fleets around the world as the vehicle is still in its infancy. Traditionally, police forces, particularly those in the United States, have used sedans and SUVs larger than the Model 3 so the entry-level Tesla could be a little too small. However, many overseas police agencies do use smaller cars in their fleets, such as the BMW i3 and in these areas, the Model S could prove to be quite useful.
One key advantage electric vehicles have over traditional ICE-powered ones are traditionally lower maintenance costs, something particularly important for police forces. Charging up an EV is also a lot cheaper than filling up a vehicle with gas or diesel.