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Rumors of Holden vehicles, specifically the rear-drive Commodore, coming to the U.S. have always been a fixture of the automotive media, and with the Holden-based Pontiac G8′s demise a few years ago, some of them have seemed to be more wishful thinking than anything of substance.
General Motors is bringing back the larger Holden Statesman as a fleet-only Chevrolet Caprice, but that hasn’t stopped some suspiciously civilian-looking examples from popping up, including the one spied by an Edmunds Inside Line staffer, which is totally devoid of any police-style accouterments.
We’ve seen other shots that suggest that this is what the unmarked versions of the Caprice will look like, but we can still hold out hope that it’s also the basis for something much better, and available to the general public.
[Source: Inside Line]
While the Chevrolet Caprice is reserved for police vehicle fleets only, there have been some rumors about a civilian version making its way to showrooms for public consumption, and the latest videos showing footage of a police evaluation event only seem to further that.
Previous shots of the Caprice have either shown it in full police livery, or an “unmarked” version which ditched the lightbar and graphics but still retained the steel wheels and blacked out grilles. But the Caprices used in the latest video look like they could be sold to customers, if not for the small flashing lights hidden in the front fascia. Otherwise, the alloy wheels and interior devoid of any police equipment look pretty production ready. If it’s any consolation, we pressed one GM engineer at the Camaro Convertible launch about such a vehicle, and he answered with a wry smile, stating “these things have a way of happening”.
Video after the jump
At the annual International Association of Chiefs of Police convention being held in Denver, Colorado, General Motors unveiled an all-new police cruiser, resurrecting the Chevrolet Caprice name. The General was rumored to be working on a police cruiser based on the Australian Holden Commodore (formerly rebadged and sold as the Pontiac G8 in North America). This is not that car.
Due to the need for more passenger and cargo room, this new vehicle, called the Chevrolet Caprice Police Patrol Vehicle (PPV) is based on a different (and larger Australian car) sold as the Holden Caprice/Statesman in its native land. The same rear-drive architecture is also used for the Chevy Camaro.
The car is large, with more interior space than a Ford Crown Vic and almost 4-inches more legroom in the rear seats – so you’ll be in for a comfortable ride after your botched attempt to rob the 7/11. There’s also more room up front and special seats were designed to keep officers comfortable over long periods of time. Because the Caprice isn’t based on any current road going vehicle in North America, the vehicle was purpose built with plenty of input from law enforcement agencies. They even went so far as to use materials that will hold up better to more rigorous use.
Best of all, the car will come with a 6.0-liter V8 rated at 355hp and 384 ft-bs of torque. So watch out street racers, because this new cruiser can hit 60 mph in less than six seconds. A V6 engine will also be offered in the future.
“The new Chevrolet Caprice police car is the right tool at the right time for law enforcement,” said Jim Campbell, general manager for GM Fleet and Commercial Operations. “We asked for a lot of feedback from our police customers, which helped us develop a vehicle that is superior to the Crown Victoria in key areas.”
GM will begin selling the Chevrolet Caprice PPV in 2011, exclusively to law enforcement agencies.
GALLERY: Chevrolet Caprice PPV
Official release after the jump: