Here’s something you probably didn’t know: You can go buy a new police car right now. You do not have to be a member of a police force. You do not have to be a government fleet buyer. You don’t even have to lie to the salespeople and tell them you’re someone other than a midlevel IT worker whose week is highlighted by a cross-the-cubicle paper-into-trash-can bank shot.
I discovered this last week when I went searching for a Chevy Caprice PPV to use as the daily Autotrader Find. What happened was, I typed in "police" as my keyword, and I assumed a bunch of used cop cars would show up — but then, there they were: a large inventory of brand-new Ford Explorer police vehicles.
Of course, these models are not fitted with sirens, or a giant LED light bar, or some sort of police insignia on the door. But they’re out there right now: Most of them are white, they have that little chrome police-style hubcap in the center of black steel wheels, and many of them even have an LED alley light mounted on the A-pillar. They also include a column shifter (where the normal Explorer has a floor shifter), vinyl rear seating, and a lot of cool blank switches so you know that your car was made for workhorse duty.
Now, I admit, you wouldn’t actually want any of these Explorer police cars, since they don’t have anywhere near as many amenities as a standard Explorer — and also, the back door might not open from the inside. But you have to admit the idea of it is kind of cool. Just think about it: You don’t have to drive the gussied-up high-class Explorer they sell to the typical suburban families with four children all named something that rhymes with "Braden." Instead, you can drive the super-basic one, and your kids will always look like they’re getting dropped off at daycare by a security detail.
In other words: Buy an Explorer police car, and no one will mess with your kids. Buy an Explorer police car, and no one will mess with you. And if anyone ever spills a juice box in the back seat, you can just hose down the vinyl. Find a Ford Explorer for sale
Doug DeMuro is an automotive journalist who has written for many online and magazine publications. He once owned a Nissan Cube and a Ferrari 360 Modena. At the same time.