Picture yourself hurtling down the roads, sirens blaring, chasing down notorious criminals in a high-speed pursuit. The thrill, the adrenaline, and the sense of duty all encapsulated in one experience - welcome to the world of Cops and Robbers on our new themed driving day packages at Driving Experience!
As we gear up following the launch of our latest driving experience package, we take a nostalgic journey through time to explore the iconic police cars that once patrolled the streets of the United Kingdom.
While the variety of cars is wide, one consistency is how most of them have come from UK-based manufacturers. Evidently, the police have UK car makers' backs as much as ours.
Join us as we uncover the evolution of law enforcement vehicles, from the classic Wolseley 4/50 to the Vauxhall Vectra. Elementary, my dear Watson!
Our journey begins in the 1950s with the Wolseley 4/50 and its successor, the 6/80, one of the first cars purpose-built for police use. Boasting a robust design, these vehicles served as reliable workhorses for law enforcement, embodying the spirit of an era marked by simplicity and functionality.
With their distinctive silhouette and chrome-laden front grilles, the Wolseley cars were a common sight patrolling the streets, maintaining law and order. The 6/80 boasted a top speed of 85 mph, and slugged its way up from 0 - 60 mph in 21.4 seconds…
OK, those figures may not sound impressive today, but at the time, the Wolseley vehicles felt exceptionally quick. And remember, they only needed to be quicker than the car they were chasing!
Fast forward to the swinging 60s, and you'll find the Triumph TR4 making its mark as a quintessential police pursuit car. With its sporty design and impressive performance, the TR4 added a touch of style to the plod's fleet.
Police officers could be seen zipping through the streets with the wind in their hair, chasing down lawbreakers with both speed and flair. Who said being a policeman wasn't a stylish job! We feel it was a perfect car for its time.
The 1960s also saw the legendary Jaguar Mark II and its successor, the S-Type, don the blue lights and sirens. These elegant yet powerful cars became the envy of police forces across the UK when the Met ordered over 200 'S' type models which came with a 3.8 litre engine.
With their potent engines and luxurious interiors, the Jaguar Mark II and S-Type also brought a touch of prestige to the police fleet, at a time when they were needed. They came at the fight time, too.
Following the launch of Motorways across the country, the police force was looking for a car which had the power required to maintain faster speeds over a long time, coupled with the comfort. Often referred to as the "Gentleman's Express," these vehicles were perfect for high-speed pursuits with that air of sophistication.
Moving into the 1970s, the iconic Range Rover joined the ranks of the UK police force. Often touted as the world's first luxury SUV, the Range Rover provided unmatched off-road capabilities, ensuring that no criminal could escape the long arm of the law, even if they decided to take a detour across a farmer’s field.
Its ruggedness and versatility earned it a revered place in the history of police vehicles, and it remains an enduring symbol of strength and resilience to this day.
The 1980s marked the era of the Ford Escort, which became a staple in the UK police fleet. Loved for its reliability and cost-effectiveness (budget constraints were really biting in the 80s), the Escort played a vital role in community policing and urban patrols.
Whether it was a high-speed pursuit or a routine patrol, the Ford Escort proved to be a trusted ally for police officers, allowing them to carry out their duties effectively. Move on a couple of decades and it is ironic how the perception of the Escort changed due a large uptake in street racers picking it up.
The emergence of the Ford Granada Mark III in the 1990s put it down on the list as a prominent police car – sporting the 'jam sandwich' style of cars in the era: a lovely red stripe around the body of the car.
With its spacious interior and comfortable ride, the Granada offered police officers a sense of comfort during long hours of duty. It became synonymous with the idea of a modern police cruiser, reflecting the changing times and the evolving needs of law enforcement.
Lastly, we arrive in the 2000s, where the Vauxhall Vectra took the centre stage. As technology advanced, so did police cars, and the Vectra embraced these innovations. Equipped with cutting-edge features, including enhanced safety systems and fuel efficiency, the Vectra represented a new era in police vehicle design.
There have been plenty of other cars which have chased down criminals on our roads: BMWs, Fords, and even a Lotus Evora S, but we have some of our own criminals to catch in the office, so we will save these for another blog. Lock 'em up, team!
You too can now step into the shoes of a police officer, feel the power of a police interceptor, and immerse yourself in an adventure like no other, on our all new Cops and Robbers Driving Experience. In the experience you will get to see what it is like from both sides of the law as you get to be the hunter and the hunted.
However, in this package your day will not end with you behind the bars - but it still makes for a fun driving day by adding a bit of role play into the equation! Book today from available dates on our Events Calendar or purchase with our open Gift Vouchers.