Madison to Convert to Hybrid Police Cars

Photo courtesy of Ford

The City of Madison, Wis., is buying only hybrid police vehicles for patrol and detective work in 2019. The city has purchased 36 hybrid vehicles — 28 Ford Interceptor Utility vehicles for patrol work and eight Ford Fusion hybrid sedans for detective work — according to Mahanth Joishy, fleet superintendent.

“Madison Fleet is working closely with Madison Police Department to make the police fleet more sustainable. Police Chief Koval is personally supporting this program along with Mayor [Paul] Soglin,” Joishy said. “After noting savings on both fuel and maintenance with hybrid vehicles I have experience with, especially in New York, it made sense to engage in this transition.”

The new hybrids will join the six Ford Fusion hybrids purchased for detectives in 2018 as well as 217 gasoline-powered sedans and SUVs from Ford, Chevrolet, and Dodge. About half of the fleet is made up of Ford Interceptor Utility vehicles.

In total, the new hybrid Interceptor costs $3,000 more than the equivalent regular gasoline Interceptor, while a hybrid Fusion costs $2,000 more than a Chevrolet Impala, used as the standard detective vehicle. Joishy said that using Ford’s fuel savings estimates and actual vehicle use data, he anticipates the city will save more than 1,000 gallons of gasoline per car, per year, which will allow the city to recoup the higher upfront cost in about two years.

Joishy reported that the Ford Fusion hybrids used for detective work use half the fuel of the gasoline sedans they are replacing.

“Some fleets and police departments are concerned about trying something new on such a scale, but the Madison team is confident enough in this to double down," Joishy said. "If all goes well and there are no major operational issues, Madison will only buy electric and hybrid vehicles for all light-duty needs, including policing, from now on."

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Thi Dao

Thi Dao

Former Executive Editor

Thi is the former executive editor of Government Fleet magazine.

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