Westshore RCMP add Canada’s first Tesla Model Y police cruiser

Canada has its first Tesla Model Y police car and second Tesla police vehicle after the Westshore RCMP finally added a Model Y to its fleet this week. The Westshore RCMP detachment is leading a pilot program in Canada that will also see it add a Ford Mustang Mach-E and F-150 Lightning later this year.

Located on southern Vancouver Island the Westshore RCMP announced almost one year ago it was electrifying its fleet with a Model Y and Mach-E. The vehicles were supposed to arrive within a few months, but supply challenges and a longer than expected retrofit meant their first EV was only delivered last month and added to active duty this week.

The Model Y was outfitted with the required police equipment, all of which is powered by a separate battery added to the trunk to ensure the 531km (330 mile) driving range of the Model Y was not impacted. In an interview with Drive Tesla Superintendent Todd Preston said they were only able to add a single prisoner compartment in the back seat due to space limitations of the Model Y.

This is because of the gun rack which typically sits between the driver and passenger seat, ahead of the prisoner compartment. However the Model Ys in-car display means equipment that would usually be installed on the dash now needs to be installed in the center console, everything gets pushed back and there is no longer any space for the gun rack, which is still mounted between the seats but in the passenger compartment.

Superintendent Preston tells us the plan is to use the Model Y continuously from shift to shift, without any planned breaks to charge the EV. With the relatively small area covered by the detachment they expect the Model Y will have enough range to do this by having officers plug in the vehicle each time they return to the station to complete paperwork or other duties, or at the end of their shift during changeover.

The Westshore RCMP handles policing in the Towns of Langford, Colwood, View Royal and the surrounding communities and first nations outside of Victoria, BC and has installed four FLO Level 2 chargers outside the detachment to support the Model Y and their other EVs still to be delivered.

While they only have one EV right now, they are expecting to receive two more in the coming months, a Ford Mustang Mach-E and Ford F-150 Lightning. The fleet of EVs is part of a RCMP pilot program to determine the feasibility of adding EVs to their fleets across the country. The same three EVs will also be tested in Ottawa.

This is the first ever fully-electric RCMP police vehicle and we’re proud to be piloting it here in the West Shore detachment. Our geography and mild winter weather make this an ideal test environment. We’re also expecting to test two more electric vehicles in 2023, the Ford Mustang Mach-E and the Ford F-150. Adopting electric vehicles into our fleet demonstrates the RCMP’s stewardship and commitment to innovation in policing, said Superintendent Preston.

The Westshore RCMP is the second police department in Canada to add a Tesla vehicle to their fleet. Last year Nova Scotia’s Bridgewater Police Department became the first, adding a Model 3 cruiser last July. Just one month later and Chief of Police Scott Feener said the electric sedan was already performing better than expected.

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