Seattle PD test drives new squad cars

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by JOE FRYER / KING 5 News

KING5.com

Posted on June 19, 2012 at 6:17 PM

Updated Wednesday, Jun 20 at 9:21 AM

PORT ORCHARD, Wash. -- The Seattle Police Department started test driving six different vehicles in an effort to replace the discontinued Ford Crown Victoria. 

Several officers gathered at Bremerton Motorsports Park Tuesday morning to get behind the wheel of the squads. During the next eight months, the squads will rotate through 150 officers in different precincts.

Captain Dick Belshay, who is overseeing the selection process, wants feedback from as many officers as possible.

"They need something that they have confidence in," Belshay said.

The options are the Chevy Tahoe SUV, Chevy Caprice, Chevy Impala, Ford Interceptor sedan, Ford Interceptor SUV and Dodge Charger.

During Tuesday's show and tell, officers got to check out the space and feel of all six vehicles.  They also took the squads for a ride around the track, testing how the cars performed while making tight turns and coming to abrupt emergency stops.

Two squads will likely be chosen. Chief John Diaz will ultimately decide which squads are picked, but he will rely heavily on feedback from officers who test the cars.

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