General Motors has announced plans to bring back the Chevrolet Caprice name on a new law enforcement-only offering starting in 2011. The fleet-only rear-drive sedan will be based on a left-hand drive version of the long-wheelbase Australian-sourced Holden Caprice, which is also sold in the Middle East. However, this new Caprice Police Patrol Vehicle (PPV) features hundreds of modifications and innovative touches designed to let it best the Ford Crown Victoria -- current King of the Cop Car Hill -- in virtually every functional category. The Caprice PPV will come with a 6.0-liter/355-horsepower flex-fuel V8 tuned for heavy-duty workouts backed by a specialty-calibrated six-speed automatic transmission, a combo that will hustle it from 0-60 in less than six seconds. Staring a 2012, GM also plans to offer it with a V6.
The Zeta platform that underpins the new PPV -- as well as the Camaro and still-departed Pontiac G8 -- gets an equally serious revamp that raise the suspension tune and stopping power to full cop-spec. But GM feels the Caprice PPV's real attraction to law enforcement personnel is its built-in user friendliness. The standard seating for five in its huge 112-cubic foot cabin includes special front buckets contoured to be comfortable and supportive while accommodating bulky items worn by police on their utility belts. That seat configuration also eliminates potential airbag interference issues with equipment located in the center dash area. The PPV's electrical system has been optimized for compatibility with the latest strain of advanced touch-screen computer technology and information gathering systems and it incorporates a separate battery mounted in its 18.0-cubic foot trunk to supply auxiliary power when necessary. GM will even offer front-seat-only side-curtain airbags to allow the fitment of a protective plexiglass rear seat barrier.