is serious about enforcing their speed limits. In addition to the
traditional full size Ford police cars, they've also used unmarked Ford
Mustangs and even a Buick Grand National.
These cars could be difficult to
handle on wet and snow covered roads, so it led Connecticut to search for
a new high performance car for a patrol vehicle.
new patrol vehicle would have to have enough trunk space to carry gear,
get decent gas mileage, be comfortable to drive, have front wheel drive,
not cost much more than a Crown Victoria, and have a low enough profile to
keep speeders from spotting it. They eventually settled on the Mazda MX-6.
Connecticut considered the Ford Probe, but it's shorter and wouldn't fit
taller Troopers. Also, the door is 4-inches longer and represents a hazard
when opening the door in traffic. All the Mazda MX-6's were automatic
transmission cars and were equipped with either radar or vascar.
ordered six Mazdas in 1989 in a variety of colors.
(Note the red strobe light
next to the rear view mirror)
(Here's a Connecticut State
Police Mazda MX-6 next to one of their SSP Ford Mustangs)
According to a 1989 National
Criminal Justice Reference Service abstract:
||Unmarked Patrol Cars
||Law and Order Volume:
37 Issue:11 Dated: (November
1989) Pages: 20-23
||National Institute of Justice/
NCJRS paper reproduction
Box 6000, Dept F
Rockville, MD 20849
NCJRS Photocopy Services
Rockville, MD 20849-6000
||Unmarked sports cars are
effective in traffic enforcement because of their invisibility and
||The Connecticut State Police
Traffic Division, which has been running a group of unmarked Mustang
LXs since 1984, recently purchased six sporty, two-door Mazda MX-6
GTs. These Mazdas are replacing some of the older Mustangs. Mustangs
have been used around the country long enough now that some traffic
officers say they are no longer necessary because there are other
cars that can be handled more safely during high-speed pursuits. The
California Highway Patrol, known for its innovations, is now testing
a Toyota Camry sedan for possible use as a new lightweight cruiser.
There are currently no plans to replace the Mustangs or Chevrolet
and Dodge sedans used now, but there is concern that the large
gas-guzzling rear-wheel drive cars will disappear in the future. In
fact, fuel efficiency is one major reason that traffic enforcement
agencies are replacing their old cars. Other reasons include the
ability of the newer cars to reach a higher speed sooner than the
older cars, and the availability of safety features such as air bags
and four-wheel disc brakes with anti-lock braking systems.
||Motor patrol ; Police patrol
; Traffic law enforcement
February 1990 Popular Mechanics article by Mike Allen.
Criminal Justice Reference Service abstract found at: http://www.ncjrs.gov/App/Publications/abstract.aspx?ID=122535