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InspectorJavert

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Fair enough. I can see the point of having Estates but I think there should be a spread of hatchbacks and estates. We had hatchbacks for years without this issue. I must admit I thought it was more to do with a standardised national fleet but what you say makes sense.

The issue has always been there, but we just ignored it and relied on the we're exempt because we're the police. A few incidents later and we are where we are.

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The issue has always been there, but we just ignored it and relied on the we're exempt because we're the police. A few incidents later and we are where we are.

New toy for the TFL and BTP joint Emergency response units   Photo from @BTPNetworkResp There are 5 of these new trucks joining the 4 already in service on 57 plates, plus 2 05 plate R

You say that, but looking at most police cars in the US, I'd consider them luxury! Pretty much every police cruiser seems to be a high-powered vehicle. The vast majority of our vehicles are 1.6l diese

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Jeebs

out of interest, if insignia is too cramped, what veh would you propose?  

Is if cramped for driver, passenger, load capacity?  

The shape just doesn't lend its self to being a police vehicle. The boot is too small, it's a struggle to get two large kit bags in the back, with other kit as well.

In body armour and rig, it feels cramped and difficult to get in and out of, especially if you have 3 officers in one car. 

Reliability also seems to be an issue, ours are often off the road because of strange knocking noises from the front suspension and engine trouble. The Insignias seem to have very little power sometimes, other times they fly! 

We have a number of Skodas at the moment and they are much better, as they are a proper saloon, unlike the Insignia. You can get much more kit in them and they are far more comfortable and reliable. There is one in the yard with well over 150k miles on it and it's still going. 

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Richhamdo

Spend a day in a 1.3 corsa.....

Yoshay, Or a mini van. My tutor, who has gone to a happier place now had one h--l  of an argument with the big white chief in his office  about having to drive a 850 grey mini van,the whole station heard them shouting,he was a big guy and he couldn't drive it,(I told the story about it before)not only that it was like a coke oven in summer. We had three or four of them for rural, and five two tone mini cars for town.we also had  a big transit van and Gp estate of course, everyone was happy when these minis went, whether  this row had anything to do with it I wouldn't like to say.Rich.

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Cuddles

When I've been working with West Mids on football matches I've found the bucket seats in their Insignias to be awful to get in and out of. Felt like I'd suffered a dislocated hip by the end of the day!

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Burnsy2023

When I've been working with West Mids on football matches I've found the bucket seats in their Insignias to be awful to get in and out of. Felt like I'd suffered a dislocated hip by the end of the day!

That's probably your age :P

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Cuddles

Haha, I think my girlfriend would probably agree with you! I'm 30, she's 28 and apparently I'm an old man!

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Burnsy2023

Haha, I think my girlfriend would probably agree with you! I'm 30, she's 28 and apparently I'm an old man!

Big 30 eh?  Not long left then. :D

I'm same age as your GF but the years have been harsh and taken their toll on me...

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Cuddles

Big 30 eh?  Not long left then. :D

I'm same age as your GF but the years have been harsh and taken their toll on me...

You should definitely avoid West Mids Police Insignias then! :D

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  • 7 months later...
Rocket

Took out our new SNT vehicle last night which is a Vauxhall Mokka. Much more roomy than an Astra and I like it a lot.

Very good spec, eco friendly having start-stop fitted and has a 'whisper diesel' engine which was very quiet indeed and made me question at the start whether it had a petrol engine :)

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Policey_Man
8 hours ago, Rocket said:

Took out our new SNT vehicle last night which is a Vauxhall Mokka. Much more roomy than an Astra and I like it a lot.

Very good spec, eco friendly having start-stop fitted and has a 'whisper diesel' engine which was very quiet indeed and made me question at the start whether it had a petrol engine :)

Mokka? What a name! Makes me think of coffee.....

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Rocket
27 minutes ago, Policey_Man said:

Mokka? What a name! Makes me think of coffee.....

Indeed, we were short of a vehicle last night and as we had been given a job to go to another officer PTP'ed us and said he was going off duty and would bring the Mokka back for us and I shouted out "Chokka Mokka" 

Silly name, but a good (far better then an Astra) car :)

It looks great marked up!

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David

Public perception undoubtedly plays a part in vehicle selection but I think we need to be standing up to it and the 'how can they afford such expensive cars'. My parents have a Kia Picanto. Yes it's a nice enough car, it's nice to drive and feels relatively nippy. That it has a good engine and bodywork isn't in dispute, however, against a more mainstream make it does feel cheap, simply because - without trying to be offensive - it is. I feel it immediately when driving their car against one I've had on hire: a more mainstream model feels more sturdy inside. The movement of door mirrors feels sloppy and flimsy, the gear stick doesn't feel too solid; the switches don't seem to be as positive as they could be.

It may well be that the public expect the police to drive the cheapest car they can get, but that's not always practical. I simply can't see how a car like my parents would stand up to high-mileage and shift after shift of officers adjusting seats and mirrors. I honestly feel bits would break and drop off in weeks and I wonder if seats and things would stand up to the constant wear of dozens of officers in and out of the vehicle all day every day.

Hampshire struck a deal with Ford to replace area cars. No doubting Ford's reliability and name, but against a BMW it simply couldn't compete for high-mileage and often speedy driving. It wasn't area car drivers bemoaning the loss of a BMW (or at some stations a Skoda which were also well-received) but simply the fact they did not believe the Ford estate was up to the same performance and longevity as the BMW estate. And so it proved within weeks.

I'd also suggest that police cars need to have 'presence' and a Focus, which seems an ideal choice for panda work and limited response, for my part combines competence with presence - and is a practical, mainstream vehicle.

Whilst of course we need to be aware of costs (I don't advocate Volvo T70s for general panda work), we also need to be pragmatic and officers should not be shoehorned into too small pandas, they deserve better as do area car and traffic drivers.

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VerySpecialConstable

The thing is, if we wanted to go cheap, why aren't we buying MG 6's? Diesel saloon vehicles which are a heck of a lot cheaper (and better) than insignias.

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I believe the purchase framework (at least for our force) looks at 'whole life' cost, to include purchase price, maintenance, repair, fuel, W&T, residual value etc.

Apparently that has thrown out some interesting reversals in perception. 

Vehicles that need to be maintained more, and have higher servicng costs (dependant on who services - in house or external) can significantly affect the overal whole life cost. Even though initial purchase prices maybe more competitive.

To David's point, if the build / engineering quality isnt up to demands of the job, then costs can increase significantly, especially when multiplied out to fleet. 

Best value needs to be more transparent to the public, but thats never going to come from the media as its not in their interests to do so - they want circulation, and an evocative headline best serves that purpose. 

Our GPV fleet has just moved from Skoda to Ford, we'll see how that plays out. The Octavia was much loved, and the 4x4 version useful in the winter too giving more flex than the standard model with winter tyres. 

On traffic everyone loves the 5 series, gives you a real sense of confidence regardless of the demands of the role. But it wasnt always that way. When we moved from the Volvo T5 to BMW, many hated them. Sighting the same issues around confidence. Theyve really proved themselves in the field. 

Now we're going to get the V90, so back to Volvo. No doubt the same issues may arise, but Volvo do have considerable specialist police fleet experience, and I'm guessing whole life cost must be playing its part in that decision, not to mention AWD capability for that cost. 

Only time will tell, but I do feel the public need broader explanation and transparency around value for money and also we need to be comfortable with that fact that there will always be someone who disagrees. 

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