The Ford Crown Victoria is probably, thanks to film and television, one of the most famous police cars in the world. But it’s not the only Ford-badged patrol vehicle. Ford’s change of course towards an electrified range will also affect special vehicles, and that path has started with the 2023 Ford F-150 Lightning Pro SSVthe first electric pick-up for the police in the United States.
This is not just any F-150 Lightning, but rather a very special one. It is the first electric pick-up in the United States built specifically for the police. The blue oval firm has been providing vehicles to police departments for more than 70 years, and with new technologies it was not going to be less. According to the company’s own data, there are currently more than 12,000 police departments across the country using Ford models, outselling all other police vehicles combined.
Although it has more than 500 hp (depending on the version) and can do 0 to 100 km/h in around 4 seconds, it is not the type of vehicle intended for police chases – in that case, a Mustang Mach-E would be much more effective-. This is a vehicle designed for other day-to-day police tasks.
The Ford F-150 Lightning Pro SSV naturally has numerous modifications and adaptations to carry out its functions. The front seats are upholstered in a more resistant fabric and have less prominent bolsters to make it easier for officers to enter and exit the vehicle. The rear seats are made of vinyl, like the floor, easier to clean. It incorporates steel intrusion plates on the backs of the front seats, LED warning lights on the roof of the vehicle and the center console has been modified to accommodate different police equipment such as the radio or other accessories. Equip a 12-inch screen for the instrument panel and another 12-inch touch screen, landscape instead of vertical, for the infotainment system.
On the outside, the most important changes, in addition to the specific lettering and the warning lights on the roof and the front, have to do with the incorporation of a prominent front bumper against which no one would want to collide.
The police F-150 Lightning also boasts the front trunk of the production model, which provides 399 liters of capacity to store various equipment, including weapons. In the rear drawer it allows to load up to 1,014 kilos, and both here and in the front trunk, there are power supplies to connect electrical devices. For example, it can be used to illuminate an accident scene in a dark place.
And if a vehicle needs to be towed for any reason, it won’t be a problem for the F-150 Lightning. The standard battery version and 452 horses can tow 3,492 kilos. If they fall short, the 580-horsepower, extended-range version has a towing capacity of 10,000 pounds. Enough even to tow a small boat.
This F-150 Lightning SSV (the letters refer to Special Service Vehicle, or special service vehicle translated into Spanish) equips all the technology of the series model: SYNC 4, Intelligent Rance autonomy optimization system, remote software updates and the semi autonomous driving package Ford Co-Pilot360, which encompasses different driving assistance assistants. There is also a package of Ford Pro connected services thanks to which it can be connected to the rest of the existing fleet of the department in question, manage the recharging of the vehicle or carry out preventive maintenance diagnoses.