Scotland Yard, London’s police department, is in the process of electrifying its fleet of cars and motorcycles. They plan to change the first 250 vehicles within the next 12 months, but their 4000-car fleet could soon be completely electric as the city battles air pollution.
They claim to be considering all the options, even hydrogen fuel cells, but Tesla is also reportedly in the running since Met chief Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe says that he spoke to CEO Elon Musk about trialing Tesla’s vehicles.
The police chief made the comment to The Standard yesterday.
While Musk is the only CEO that Hogan-Howe mentioned talking to, the Met officials said that “they are in discussions with nearly all major car manufacturers including Ford, Mercedes, Nissan, Renault and VW to test vehicles ranging from cars to mopeds and vans.”
They are already testing the all-electric BMW i3 and Jiggs Bharij, the head of the Met’s fleet services, said that the response has been positive:
“The response from police drivers to the BMW i3 has been very positive. It’s actually a very quick car.”
The are also testing BMW’s C-Evolution electric scooter (pictures via Lucy Young – Standard):
It’s only the latest example of the city of London’s efforts to curb air pollution in the urban area. They plan to go electric for their city buses and the first long-range all-electric double-decker buses went in service last year.
Scotland Yard is also not the only police department going electric.
The city of Los Angeles announced that it will lease 288 electric vehicles, including 160 fully-electric vehicles (BEVs), which resulted in Los Angeles operating the largest city-owned fleet of pure electric vehicles. A lot of those vehicles went to the LAPD which started taking delivery of 100 BMW i3s last summer.
While the BMW i3 works for support employees or investigation teams, it doesn’t have enough range or speed to be a patrol car.
The LAPD retrofitted a Tesla Model S with equipment for police patrol and they are testing it as a ‘high-pursuit’ police cruiser. It could be what prompt Scotland Yard’s chief to reach out to Musk to try Tesla’s vehicles.