LAPD Adds Tesla Model S, BMW i3 to Fleet

LA Police Car BMW - H 2015
Courtesy of BMW

LA Police Car BMW - H 2015

The Los Angeles Police Dept. will use the cars, on loan from Tesla Motors and BMW, for testing and research purposes.

In part of a larger commitment to electric and plug-in hybrid vehicles, Los Angeles mayor Eric Garcetti announced Friday that the LAPD will add a Tesla Model S P85D and BMW i3 to it fleet of patrol cars.

Both are painted in the LAPD's black and white livery, first made famous on TV shows like Dragnet and Adam-12, with the iconic "to protect and to serve" slogan on the doors. 

The cars will be tested over the next year to evaluate their plausibility as police cars and could presage the large-scale adoption of green police vehicles by Los Angeles and other cities.

Garcetti said L.A. will lease 160 electric and 128 plug-in hybrid vehicles as part of its long-term target to convert 80 percent of the city's municipal fleet to electric vehicles by 2025.

The BMW i3 sells for $42,500 and is positioned as a nominally affordable "city car," but the Model S P85D starts at $105,000 and is a familiar sight at studio parking lots and the valet station at Cecconi's.

With 691 horsepower, a zero-to-60 time of 3.1 seconds in the now-fabled "Insane Mode" and a top speed of 155 mph, the P85D can blow the doors off supercars twice as expensive -- which should give pause to Ferrari owners thinking of making a run for it when the LAPD's Tesla appears in the rear-view mirror.