The Ford Ranger is a ute famous for its hardy and versatile nature, both features that have greatly appealed to the folks at Victoria Police.
Victoria Police have announced they will begin adopting a fleet of 2021 Ford Rangers specially converted into divisional vans to transport prisoners.
Ford Australia’s Special Vehicle Engineering (SVE) team adapted the Ranger XLT Super Cab and Dual Cab models to fit the prison cell manufactured by Centaur onto the rear tray of the ute.
The cell features both air-conditioning and a video camera to allow officers to monitor occupants in the rear, while a whole suite of computer equipment has been installed where the rear seats usually sit.
Victoria Police plans to purchase around 200 units every year for two years as it slowly replaces its aging fleet.
Ford says police found the capability and safety features of the Ranger favourable when selecting it, with 237mm of ground clearance ideal for curb hopping and AEB with pedestrian and cyclist detection along with lane keep assist and six airbags ideal to keep officers and others safe.
As part of the process, SVE tested the specialised Rangers at its You Yangs Proving Ground near Geelong to make sure the ute still handled as expected, even with the extra luggage on the back.
The team is also working on another set of 4×4 Rangers designed for off road duties and another specialised Ranger-based police vehicle.
The Ranger has previously been recruited by a number of police forces around Australia including New South Wales who used a Ranger Raptor for light towing duties and then went a size bigger when it adopted a fleet of Ram 1500 to tow boats used by the Marine Comand.
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