After a 15-year absence patrolling U.S. streets, an all-new law-enforcement-only Chevrolet Caprice Police Patrol Vehicle (PPV) joins GM's fleet in 2011. Although it's built on the same rear-wheel-drive Camaro and dearly-departed Pontiac G8-spawning Zeta platform, it's not a G8 sedan.
Chevrolet plans to make the announcement of their new police cruiser today at the annual International Association of Chiefs of Police convention, in Denver, Colorado. Because we asked, we've been given an exclusive look at the details of the new car they plan to begin taking orders on next year with cars set to hit the streets in early 2011.
Contrary to reports at the end of last week by a number of auto outlets, we're now able to exclusively report GM's new police cruiser brings back the old Chevy Caprice name. It also will not be a re-badged Pontiac G8 sedan. Instead, the new Chevy uses the longest wheelbase version of the Zeta platform — 118.5" — making it almost four inches longer than the 114.7" wheelbase Pontiac G8 sedan. If that bigger-than-G8 number sounds familiar, it should — it's the same length as the Holden VE Ute, the Holden Statesman and the Middle Eastern Chevy Caprice and...drum roll, please...the Pontiac "El Camino" G8 ST. That's right folks, the new police car from Chevy is as close to the El Camino as we're coming here in the U.S. We'll give you a moment to clean up any coffee you've just spit up.
Done? Good, because there's more to the story. Chevy sounds like it's setting up the Caprice to not only meet the bar set by the police vehicle competition, but to blow it away. The long wheelbase Zeta-platformed Chevy sits right in the middle of the Ford Crown Vic's 114.7" wheelbase and the larger Dodge Charger's 120.0" wheelbase.
Under the hood, GM says the Caprice will have a 6.0-liter LS2 V8 engine rated at an estimated 355 HP and 384 lb-ft of torque mated to a six-speed auto transmission. Power output compares favorably to the 340 HP HEMI in the Dodge Charger police edition and absolutely blows away the Ford Crown Vic's 250 HP 4.6-liter V8.