Dodge is making some serious claims that the new Charger, set to be launched in November, will outdo Ford when it comes to the police fleet market. Of course, we are not talking about the actual Charger that will be available to consumers, but the engine-enhanced, seat-altering model that is being prepared for our guys in blue.
"We will go after that market hard," Peter Grady, Chrysler’s head of network development and fleet said Tuesday in a speech before the NAFA Fleet Management Association at Cobo Center.
Ford has had the police market cornered since GM discontinued the Caprice in 1996, but the competition is now stirring up as Dodge and GM launch different models for their attack. General Motors is launching a 2011 Chevy Caprice and Dodge, of course, is full steam ahead with their Charger. Dodge is also prepared to bring another model to add to their arsenal; the new Chrysler 300 police fleet model complete with extra covered storage bins and a few more cupholders. Dominating the market at 70%, Ford has their ammo as well with the2011 Ford Interceptor based on the Ford Taurus and a modified Ford Explorer joining the fleet at a later date.
The 2010 Dodge Charger is currently being tested by the Michigan State Police Precision Driving Unit who test all potential police vehicles and follow it up with an annual report. This report will provide the information needed to make a good purchase.
Pricing, obviously, is always a valid concern and, with new budget cuts, a major obstacle in the decision. The vehicles seem to be competitively priced, however, with the Dodge Charger going for between 25K and 39K and the 2011 Ford Interceptor rumored to be in the area of the outgoing Crown Victoria which has a base price of 27K. Pricing for the 2011 Chevy Caprice is still unknown.
Police will definitely have a few choices when making their decision, but we think you would be hard-pressed to find someone who would like to ride around in a Ford Taurus instead of a Dodge Charger. Why not allow our faithful officers a chance to ride around in style?