Government surplus is a weird thing. Sometimes, the vehicles churned out of the federal machine are used up like old newspapers. Others have few (we’ve seen as low as 18) miles on their odometers. Pretending to even fathom the purchasing process is an exercise in futility.
But the Ace of Base shopper cares not one whit, as he or she is simply after one thing: the deal. Cop cars are, by nature, sparsely equipped versions of civilian units.
Generally clad in Oxford White, some low-mile Taurus Interceptors haven’t even had their interiors sullied by the bodily fluids of America’s Most Wanted. Good news (shades of James May) – it’s not a complete and barren wasteland inside the Interceptor. A single USB port resides across the cabin while a backup camera embedded in the rearview mirrors helps prevent drivers from reversing over peasants. Get one now before Ford exits the sedan game.
There are plenty of Crown Vic Interceptors to go around, too (our own Murilee enjoyed such an example in his California days). Many are under ten grand and most south of three. Included with many is an A-pillar-mounted spotlight perfect for blinding random winos, plus an honest-to-gawd column shifter like nature and Henry Ford intended. Interceptors tinted a natty shade of blue or brown allow drivers to indulge in gritty undercover detective fantasies. Caveat emptor: these are the type of used cop car most likely to wilt under the harsh inspection of a UV light. Wear gloves.
Dodge Chargers now abound on the used market, turfed from police fleets for whatever reason. Like its Taurus cohort, it is also less likely to have been used as a toilet by troublemakers than a Crown Vic. AutoTrader shows a 2016 AWD V8 example for just $22,488, which includes the enormous cop-Jumbotron in the centre stack (now we know the testing grounds for Ram’s new 12-inch unit) and, hey, is that a column shifter? Why, yes it is.
Don’t count out the Explorer, either, a model which is increasingly giving fits to freeway drivers across the nation. More likely than most to be deployed as a K9 unit (not unlike the Tahoe), check for doggie presents in the cargo area. A 2017 unit with dog-dish hubcaps and virtually no miles on the clock is advertised in the great state of Pennsylvania for a hair over 30 grand. It is, of course, four-wheel drive.
Speaking of the Tahoe, a good many of the PPV units advertised online in America are two-wheel drive units, save for the scattered 4×4 in northern climes. Most of them are sold fitted with enormous bull bars, perfect for occasions when you just need to arrive at a party like gangbusters. One thing’s for sure: filling up the mirror of a left lane lounger with all nine yards of a Tahoe PPV grille fitted with a bull bar will get them out of your way in a hurry. That alone is worth the mid-$20s price of admission.
Ace of Base contenders then? By this author’s measure, definitely the Tahoe (because Tahoe) and the Charger (that jumbo screen and column shifter). I’m not as sure about the others. I’ll leave it up to the B&B to argue their merits in the comments.
Not every base model has aced it. The ones which have? They help make the automotive landscape a lot better. Any others you can think of, B&B? Let us know in the comments. Naturally, feel free to eviscerate our selection.