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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Not a huge amount of info.

Fleet made the anticipated changes to the Durango Pursuit this past January. Newly available features include the vinyl floor and rear seat, dedicated police wiring harnesses, and a police-specific center floor console (no column shifter yet). Braking also got an upgrade from the puny BR2 to the new BRY brakes. The BRY are approximately the equivalent to the older BR8 Charger Pursuit brakes used from 2012 through December of 2014. Wheels are still the aluminum flavor, with the T-rated Michelin skins. There are some rumors of agencies getting a waiver to raise the top speed if they run H-rated (or higher) rubber, but there's no way to verify that. Fleet is standing by the Durango's current 118 mph, which is not uncompetitive with the 4x4 Tahoe PPV, which runs 121 mph. With the V8 Charger still running a buck and a half, the need for a high-speed stablemate is not necessary.

Speaking of America's SuperCar, the Charger Pursuit remains on hiatus until September (at least), when we will see the 8-speed autos finding their way into the field. I have seen some correspondence between agency fleet managers claiming the AWD 5.7 model will be replaced by a new AWD 3.6/850RE model. Now, digging into this, there is some good sense to this strategy, as many northern states would appreciate the lower-cost V6 with AWD, and Canadian agencies have been begging for one for some time. There is something of a question as to whether the V6's performance would be sufficient, but in reality, it did very well at the 2020 Michigan State Police evaluations. Agencies that prefer the V8 would still be able to order the 5.7 RWD model with the 8HP70 trans.

We must stop right here, because the only things FCA Fleet is confirming about anything regarding the 2021 police vehicle lineup is that there will be Charger and Durango Pursuits, along with a Durango SSV, Ram 1500 SSV, and a new Ram 2500 SSV.
 

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Great information.... always keep an eye out for your perspective/posts.
Around here the police are Ford heavy.
2 notable exceptions- Canada Border Services Agency and a local municipality have AWD Chargers.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Great information.... always keep an eye out for your perspective/posts.
Around here the police are Ford heavy.
2 notable exceptions- Canada Border Services Agency and a local municipality have AWD Chargers.
There are still pockets of Ford loyalists, but most state agencies have made the Charger their primary enforcement unit. There are likely several reasons for this, the biggest of which is money - purchase price, operating costs, and resale value. When an agency, such as the CHP, can buy a V6 Charger with a starting bid-out price of appx $22,000, and the 2020 Ford Exploder and Tahoe (the Taurus Interceptor is not a player here) bid out for a minimum of $10,000 more per unit, that's huge. So is lower fuel usage, even including the AWD V8 Charger. The rectified valvetrain issues with the V8 Dodge also played a very large part in lowered costs, although the majority of those repairs were under the Fleet 5/100 warranty that FCA is supplying without charge to their LEA customers. with regard to resale, the Tahoe is very competitive with the AWD Dodge, but Fords simply cannot seem to hold their value, which is something they've had to deal with for many years.

Going forward, I do not see large price increases for the 2021+ Charger Pursuit. The new transmissions have long since proven their worth, as has the V6/AWD arrangement. There will be some minor engineering cost with regard to column shifter changes, and emissions/crash testing.
It is worth noting that they are using the Durango/GC 850RE in the new V6 car, alleviating any concerns about transmissions in a car that's at least 1000 lbs lighter. The 8HP70 has also proven to be very reliable, and SRT can always upgrade to the 8HP90 or 95, but I doubt that will be necessary, even in cars that are beat to death, like these are.

An AWD unit that can still run a buck forty or so, and return at least 20 mpg average, at a purchase price that allows for a 1.5:1 replacement cost compared to the Ford or Chevy, is an astonishing value, regardless of brand preference.

I would like to see continued improvements, particularly with the radiator design, ABS pump placement, and the crappy RWD front suspension design. Multi-link is all fine and wonderful, but it is not police-durable. A modernized, beefed-up torsion bar system, whether longitudinal or transverse, would be lighter and far more durable.
I would also like to see SRT badger the aftermarket suppliers into developing a center console for both the Charger and Durango that does not eat up every single inch of space between the seats. They should also return to Timken for their hub assemblies, and Bendix for their brakes. Eaton Truetrac rear diffs should be standard in these cars, as well.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Fascinating stuff....I'm a law enforcement hobbyist I guess u could say....I've always had an interest in it. Combine with Mopar and away we go.
Believe it or not, that's me too. I had a fascination with the Mopar squads as a kid, when CHiPs first came out. My first car was a '77 Fury 360. The more I learned about them, the more fascinating they became. I learned a lot from the old-school troopers and dealer mechanics back then, primarily when the M body was ruling the land. It's amusing that the old timers I talk to now and then always say the Diplomat or Gran Fury was the better car, when compared to the then-new 1992 4.6 Ford. The Chevy was the better car by that time, but they couldn't keep them out of the shop. Every single retiree I've ever talked to says the M body was quicker, handled better, and braked better than the Queen Victoria of the time (late 80's to probably middle 90's). The all agree the "89-'90 B body Chevy was a better car than the Chrysler, but before that, the Mopars were the best performers. I've never heard anything in the way of k-frame issues or computer issues, but it's probably because they remember how the cars performed as a tool, not from a fleet aspect. I do know, from talking to the older mechanics, that the '85 - early '88 cars had the worst k-frame issues, and the 2bbl cars had the lean burn issues (4bbl cars had the computers under the dash, and seldom, if ever, went belly up).

I think the Intrepid took a bad rap because most agencies simply did not want a FWD police unit. The flaming brakes were a poor choice of brake pad, nothing more.

Earlier (LX) cars suffered from lousy parts quality, and an overall design that differed little from retail cars, which could only result in retail levels of durability in the field. Chrysler, knowing that Ford was going to discontinue the Panthers in 2011, knew they really had to step it up with the squads. That did improve somewhat after the Daimler/Chrysler split, but it was not until they jettisoned almost all of the previous Daimler synergies with the 2011 LD models did the cars really start to improve, and there were still too many bugs until 2013 or so. I would say mid-2016 was a point of significant quality improvement, and by 2019, they also had the lifter/cam issue licked for good.
 

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One thing I'd like manufacturers go back to would be straight axle rear suspensions. Way too many things to break on the IRS designs.

Mopar LX/LY, etc front ends; I'm starting to become proficient to repairing them. I'm (semi retired) alignment/suspension tech.
 
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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
One thing I'd like manufacturers go back to would be straight axle rear suspensions. Way too many things to break on the IRS designs.

Mopar LX/LY, etc front ends; I'm starting to become proficient to repairing them. I'm (semi retired) alignment/suspension tech.
I agree in principle, but then compare the handling of a 2011 Queen Victoria to a 2020 RWD V6 Charger Pursuit. The Ford used a Watts linkage that also added weight and needless complexity, with little real benefit. Many older officers told me they preferred the old-fashioned leafs in the M-body, as it provided a steadier ride and much better handling overall. The biggest issue with a live rear axle is traction over rough surfaces. Ford didn't help matters much with virtually unservicable rear shocks.

The one positive - the AWD cars have a very simple, heavy design. Looking under my '17, the only thing I can say is "holy crap". The beef is there, and considering the weight if that thing, it had better be !!!
 

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Ford Panther rear shocks; 2002 down to possibly 1965, the upper nuts were a PITA to access, 2003-11 the rear shocks had been moved over to outside of the frame rails.

As for the IRS fad; Dodge/Ram not only stayed with live axles as well as on at least 8 lug trucks, starting abound 2015, Mopar went back to straight axle from ends. even on 2WD pickups.
 
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Ford Panther rear shocks; 2002 down to possibly 1965, the upper nuts were a PITA to access, 2003-11 the rear shocks had been moved over to outside of the frame rails.

As for the IRS fad; Dodge/Ram not only stayed with live axles as well as on at least 8 lug trucks, starting abound 2015, Mopar went back to straight axle from ends. even on 2WD pickups.
IRS will return...with a vengeance. TAK-4 is just the tip of the iceberg. With hub motors and such in the offing, there's little reason to be wedded to ancient technology.
 
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IRS will return...with a vengeance. TAK-4 is just the tip of the iceberg. With hub motors and such in the offing, there's little reason to be wedded to ancient technology.
With hub motors; IFS/IRS does make sense; since there will be 'no' mechanical connections between each at least driving wheel, just a handful of wires, etc.
 
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IRS will return...with a vengeance. TAK-4 is just the tip of the iceberg. With hub motors and such in the offing, there's little reason to be wedded to ancient technology.
Hub wheels are likely to be a maintenance/reliability nightmare. Cooling and sealing those beasts will be problematic, and they will make for obscene amounts of unsprung weight. Not worth it imho.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Ford Panther rear shocks; 2002 down to possibly 1965, the upper nuts were a PITA to access, 2003-11 the rear shocks had been moved over to outside of the frame rails.

As for the IRS fad; Dodge/Ram not only stayed with live axles as well as on at least 8 lug trucks, starting abound 2015, Mopar went back to straight axle from ends. even on 2WD pickups.
indeed, and I should know better - I had an '04 Vic. Still, going from that to an LX (and from the LX to the LD) was nearly incomparable between the designs.

The biggest issue with the IRS is weight and maintenance. In order for the OEMs to ensure a reasonable level of durablity (and to meet police certification requirements), the links had to get beefed up almost continuously. The plethora of bushings involved means there are many more parts to fail, as it's generally the bushings that crap out before a ball joint, etc. I do give Ford credit for trying out aluminum control arms with the '03-'05 Panthers, but they learned the hard way that police service dictates uncompromised durability. The 2006 models came with heavy stamped steel assemblies. Chrysler - or, more accurately at that time, Daimler - chose to ignore that lesson with the LX models. Repeated tension strut and even tie rod failures soured many an agency from what was otherwise a better choice of patrol car. In fact, premature bushing failures continued through at least mid-2016, when SRT was able to convince the bean-counters that utilizing Hellcat bits and pieces in the RWD squads would largely alleviate the issue. The only remaining conundrum is premature anti-swaybar bushing and linkage failure.

Perhaps there will be a day when SRT can convince those same dimbulb bean counters to pony up a buck or two per squad, and install grease zerks in the suspensions.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Hub wheels are likely to be a maintenance/reliability nightmare. Cooling and sealing those beasts will be problematic, and they will make for obscene amounts of unsprung weight. Not worth it imho.
Agreed. I could, however, see motors replacing differentials, which would seem to make a good bit of sense.

Electric locomotives first appeared with that kind of arrangement over 100 years ago, so the technology is there. That could also lead to railroad-style regenerative (dynamic) braking, whereas the motors are switched to reversing the flow of current, the power generated going into some sort of capacitor or battery, and also providing braking resistance.

I cannot understand why the Class 8 truck makers never adapted the diesel-electric arrangement currently utilized by the freight rail industry.
 

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Agreed. I could, however, see motors replacing differentials, which would seem to make a good bit of sense.

Electric locomotives first appeared with that kind of arrangement over 100 years ago, so the technology is there. That could also lead to railroad-style regenerative (dynamic) braking, whereas the motors are switched to reversing the flow of current, the power generated going into some sort of capacitor or battery, and also providing braking resistance.

I cannot understand why the Class 8 truck makers never adapted the diesel-electric arrangement currently utilized by the freight rail industry.
Yes, compact inboard motors make lots of sense—although it negates torque vectoring, it’s a much less compromised design in so many ways.
 

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Note the Toyota Prius uses a regenerative braking feature that extends operating distances between gas fillups. Note, aside from some suspension work, my knowledge of hybrid/straight electric drivetrains is all but nil.
 
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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
If we followed current North American railroad tech, and replaced the front and rear diffs on an AWD Pursuit with electronically controlled AC motors, the front disconnect solenoids and the electronic traction and handling controls could be incorporated. We could go a step further and replace the transmission with a primary AC alternator that would power the differentials. There would be significant weight savings in both scenarios, as our new "diffs" would be smaller, with no transfer case or driveshafts required. A primary alternator would be smaller and lighter than either the current A580 or the upcoming 8 speeds for 2021. There would still be a smaller alternator to handle charging, ignition, and BCM operations.

But, that's all ahead of us. We will see how the "hybrid" Exploder holds up. I don't see the economics panning out, as the purchase price would be almost impossible to recover over the brief life of a typical squad. And, again, this is where the consistent savings of the 3.6 Pursuit model will make it the best overall choice for an agency looking for best value. So, the strategy of an AWD 8-spd V6 Pursuit looks better and better as we go along (not to say it won't be overlooked by some agencies insisting on a V8). I would hope they could give it a little better gearing to shorten up the 0-120 mph times, or add a bit of snort to the powerplant, but it's a proven arrangement, and should prove to be extremely reliable, which is the ultimate requirement.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Update to the Update:

Orders for the 2021 Charger Pursuit are tentatively set to open for Pursuit models on October 6, with a first-run production date of November 9th.

2021 Model-year tests at Michigan and California are subject to change, but appear to still be on-schedule.

There will be a V6/AWD model and a V8/RWD model, both with the 8-spd automatics, as previously noted.

Whether the V6 model can meet some of the current acceleration specs is an open question, but none of the SUV squads can meeting the same specs, either, without far more expensive turbo or V8 options.

An agency desiring the V8/AWD Charger strictly for the acceleration times would be making a pretty foolish choice by going to the turbo Exploder for a lot more money and little true benefit.

We shall see.
 

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Update to the Update:

Orders for the 2021 Charger Pursuit are tentatively set to open for Pursuit models on October 6, with a first-run production date of November 9th.

2021 Model-year tests at Michigan and California are subject to change, but appear to still be on-schedule.

There will be a V6/AWD model and a V8/RWD model, both with the 8-spd automatics, as previously noted.

Whether the V6 model can meet some of the current acceleration specs is an open question, but none of the SUV squads can meeting the same specs, either, without far more expensive turbo or V8 options.

An agency desiring the V8/AWD Charger strictly for the acceleration times would be making a pretty foolish choice by going to the turbo Exploder for a lot more money and little true benefit.

We shall see.
V6 cars now considered too slow? What are the road test specs now....
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
V6 cars now considered too slow? What are the road test specs now....
One set of 2020 bid specs from a midwestern state police agency shows a maximum 0-60 mph time of 6.2 seconds.

I think the AWD V-6 will do well, but probably half a second too slow. So, they either adjust the specs, go with the RWD V-8 model, or they pony-up an extra $10K + per unit for the Ecoboom Exploder - which may not meet those specs itself in 2021. The comments I've seen from a few of these agency heads were extremely derisive of either option for the Charger, but there's always some whiners. The reality is, as noted elsewhere in this forum, Chrysler has actually been pretty slow to react to the call for a V6 AWD Charger, particularly in Canada and up here in the upper midwest. Most agencies south of the Mason-dixon line prefer the RWD V8 hotrod, so AWD is a moot point (ironically, one of those Very Upset agency chiefs is IN the south).

Ultimately, the real issue is psychological. The premise that an otherwise fully capable vehicle is disqualified if it misses one of the marks by half a second seems ludicrous - but it happened to the M body Diplomat in 1987 (the identical Plymouth passed).

Still, If an officer is after a crotch rocket, or a Viper or Vette, they'll have a FAR better shot at catching them in a Charger than any of the piggish SUV squads. The Charger has the power, the brakes, and the handling to get the job done. That was the very mission for the Charger Pursuit from Day 1 in 2006, and it remains so today.
 
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