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NSW Police add Volvo XC60 SUV to fleet

Volvo XC60 Police Car

Fleet of Volvo SUVs roll out in western NSW as part of Operation Westforce.

NSW Police have taken delivery of one of the most technologically advanced cars to join its fleet in recent years, as the force continues to audition replacements for the Ford Falcon and Holden Commodore

Seven Volvo XC60 T6 SUVs will be pressed into full-time duty in country areas as fully fledged highway patrol cars, making their debut as part of a new strike force targeting speeding drivers in the west of the state.

Highway Patrol vehicles are required to pass a more stringent series of tests than regular (or ‘general duty’) police cars, and carry up to 200kg of additional equipment. Braking and handling must be up to the task, as other cars like the Ford Mustang has found out to its cost. 

Operation WestForce is a rapid-deployment, high-visibility operation aimed at reducing the rising road toll in the western region of NSW, and the Volvos will join an additional seven Toyota LandCruisers on the fleet that will also be rolled out to police commands in NSW regional areas.

The vehicles will be dispatched to areas like the Snowy Mountains, New England and Darling Downs.

The XC60’s turbocharged and supercharged 2.0-litre four-cylinder petrol engine is good for 228kW and 430Nm, and will top out at 210km/h.

Statistics show that the death toll in 2015 in the western region of 64 was a 46 per cent jump over the 2014 figure of 40.

The eight-speed automatic transmission and all-wheel-drive powertrain will suit country operations, as well, while the XC60s have been outfitted with licence plate camera gear and speed detection equipment.

Launching the operation in Dubbo this morning, Acting Commander of the Traffic and Highway Patrol Command, Assistant Commissioner Michael Corboy, said he was excited to unveil the new Volvo XC60s.

"Seven new Volvos, along with seven new Toyota LandCruisers, will be added to our fleet and will be used to police rural areas," he said.

"The new vehicles were chosen and fitted out in order to access and police off-road areas, where a sedan may have difficulties."

Statistics show that the death toll in 2015 in the western region of 64 was a 46 per cent jump over the 2014 figure of 40.

"During Operation Westforce, there will be more than double the number of cars on patrol, looking for speeding, drink and drug driving, seatbelt and mobile phone offences," said Assistant Commissioner Corboy.

"Police will be targeting areas where there has been an increase in fatal and serious injury crashes in order to drive down the road toll."

The Volvos are the first new non-Holden or Ford highway patrol cars to join the fleet in numbers since the addition of 20 Subaru Impreza WRXs in the early 2000s. 

That experiment ended in embarrassment for the force, as it was subsequently revealed the cars were improperly calibrated for detecting speeding operations, rendering any infringements issued null and void.

Police forces around Australia are continuing to assess replacement vehicles for general duty and highway patrol use, with candidates like the Chrysler 300, BMW 5 Series and even the Kia Stinger in the frame.

What would you think if you were pulled over by a Volvo? Tell us what you think in the comments below.

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