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Indiana Police Chief Says Tesla Model 3 Performing Well On Patrol

Indiana Police Chief Says Tesla Model 3 Performing Well On Patrol

Bargersville, Indiana Police Chief Todd Bertram tweeted last week: "almost a year old and still beautiful only thing we have done is rear tires," showing a picture of a Tesla Model 3 parked in his driveway. 

What Happened: About one year ago, Bargersville Police put the electric car into action. They removed the interior and added everything they needed in a police car.

Although a Model 3 costs more than the Dodge Charger it's replacing initially, the department expects the Tesla to cost almost $7,000 less per year in fuel alone.

They also mention maintenance items such as tires and windshield wipers are cheaper on the Tesla. Overall, they expect so save $20,600 by the third year.

According to this recent update from Bertram, it seems the savings may be even more than anticipated.

Why It's Important: There have been many examples of police departments using Tesla vehicles as a proof-of-concept to see if the low maintenance and fuel costs would lead to a more affordable police car in the long run.

In Fremont, California, the same city where Tesla produces its vehicles, the police department has been using a Model S as a proof-of-concept for over a year.

Although there was one incident that lead the car to have to drop out of a chase due to a low battery, the department said the car started its shift with a 50% charge, and the chase occurred nine hours into the shift. 

Benzinga's Take: While the high initial cost may make an electric vehicle seem like a poor choice for taxpayers, the long-term benefits are numerous.

Electric car owners pay much less for fuel — as low as zero if solar panels can be used. These cars also have far less moving parts, so maintenance is less rigorous.

There are no oil changes, and due to regenerative braking, an EV can go an entire lifetime on one or two sets of brakes.

Officers are also frequently parked with their car idling. In a gas car, this uses gas and puts wear on the engine. In an electric car, being parked with the car on is not much different than parking the car and walking away.

Not to mention the environmental benefits these cars can bring, which can be a nice added bonus after cost savings. 

Photo coutesy of Tesla.


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