Tesla Model X highway patrol car ready to chase Australian bad guys


If there are two things you learn about police cars from watching cop shows on TV, it’s that they should be both fast and stealthy to sneak quickly into sketchy situations.

What better option than a Tesla Model X?

That’s what the police in the Australian state of Victoria are thinking at the moment, anyway.

The Victoria police department just added a new right-hand drive Model X Long Range to its Highway Patrol fleet to see if it makes the grade. It’s the first electric police car in Australia, though not the first Tesla police car worldwide. Tesla has been focusing on the police-cruiser business with the Model S and now the Model X.

Tesla rates the Long Range Model X at 325 miles of range (on the U.S. EPA driving cycle) and pegs acceleration from 0-60 mph at 2.7 seconds. That’s faster than a Dodge Challenger Hellcat or Chevrolet Corvette Z06—and plenty for a cop car.

Like most standard production cars converted for police duty, the Victoria Police Model X gets a few extra features, including lights on the roof, the front end, and the edges of the Falcon Wing doors. A mobile reader board sits inside the rear window to warn other drivers of lane closures or other hazards, and a shocking electric-blue and yellow paint job.

Tesla and Victoria Police engineers worked together to integrate police computer and electronic systems into the 17-inch center display screen of the Model X, so there’s no separate police console taking up space up front. The screen can also mirror images from offers’ body cams, and display license-plate recognition data, as well as operate the reader board and police lights, siren, and other equipment.

Victoria Police Inspector Stuart Bailey says the department expects electricity for the Model X to cost a quarter what gasoline does for other patrols cars.

The only thing missing? When arresting bad guys, officers may no longer have to put their hands on the perps’ heads to help them duck through the rear falcon-wing doors in handcuffs.