DETROIT, March 19, 1999 - Whether it's another big winter blizzard, or an ozone action day in the summer, the Detroit Police Department will soon be better prepared to "protect and serve" the citizens of the city, and the air they breathe.
Ford Motor Company today delivered two clean-burning natural gas-powered Expedition sport utility vehicles (SUVs) to the Detroit Police Department (DPD). The event was held in connection with an "Environmental Crimes Awareness" training program by the Michigan Association of Chiefs of Police and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.
The two SUVs are part of a 50 vehicle fleet of natural gas-powered Expeditions being delivered to law enforcement and other organizations across the nation. Through this three year demonstration program, Ford intends to build customer interest for natural gas sport utility vehicles and determine if they should be put into production.
"We've selected fleet customers like the Detroit Police Department to participate in this program because we know they will run the vehicles hard," said Mike McCabe, Ford's Alternative Fuel Vehicle worldwide marketing manager. "These vehicles are the toughest, cleanest, and safest sport utility vehicles on the market."
Ford's natural gas Expedition is the first SUV to meet California's Super Ultra Low Emission Vehicle (SULEV) standard - the strictest in the nation - emitting 85 percent fewer smog-forming hydrocarbon emissions than the permitted level in California for 1999.
"We are always looking for new, innovative ways to perform our jobs better and at the same time help to improve the communities we work in," says Chief Napoleon. "Trying out clean, alternative fuel SUVs is a logical way to achieve both objectives."
Additional customers participating in the three year program include: Park City Olympic Ski Area, Park City, Utah; Niagara Falls State Park, Buffalo, New York, Bethpage and Jones Beach Parks, Long Island, New York; and Stanley Park Police, Vancouver, Canada.
The DPD will incorporate the natural gas Expeditions into its existing police fleet. "We will rotate the trucks within the various divisions of the department and really put it to the test," adds Napoleon.
The Expedition is the third Ford full-size truck built in a dedicated natural gas version. NGV versions of the F-250 pickup and Econoline van are already on sale. All three trucks meet SULEV emissions and are the cleanest of their class in the world.
The natural gas Expedition is just the latest addition to Ford's "Clean Utility Vehicle" fleet. All 1999 model year Ford, Lincoln and Mercury gasoline-powered sport utility vehicles and the Windstar Minivan will meet Low Emission Vehicle (LEV) standards. Not only will these vehicles beat federal emissions standards for trucks, they will be cleaner than most passenger cars on the road today.
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