Ex-Police car for sale - wow? - frostbite
I have noticed a fair number of cars advertised on eBay that make a great feature out of being ex-police - why?

In my blissful ignorance, I would have thought they were about as attractive as an ex-taxi.
Ex-Police car for sale - wow? - Armitage Shanks{P}
The thinking maybe is that they will have done lots of motorway miles and been well maintained, if they aren't Fiesta panda cars that is! However there may well be holes in the roof and the interior where plod's gizmos have been fitted and then been removed. They might benefit from bigger capacity batteries and alternators but I guess they sell for what they are worth ie not a lot. Would you buy something like that without physically seeing it?
Ex-Police car for sale - wow? - Aprilia
In motoring mythology Police cars are supposedly serviced to perfection and the engine never gets cold - so theoretically they should be in good nick mechanically.
I am not sure I believe this, however, having seen how some get treated. Also coppers are usually bigger than average guys wearing lots of stuff on their belts ('cuffs, baton etc) so the interior can take a bit of a beating (and that's just the front seats....).
Would take a lot to persuade me to buy one.
Ex-Police car for sale - wow? - midlifecrisis
I drive one every day (Omegas, Volvos, BMW). I would never buy one. They aren't treated very sympathetically and as mentioned the interiors rarely survived unscathed. The ones due for disposal usually have lots of odd rattles from the engine bay. Not all traffic cars spend their lives on the motorway. I use mine on A and B roads, they certainly earn their keep.
Ex-Police car for sale - wow? - THe Growler
Reminds me of Elwood Blues buying that 1990 Ford with the police package for $500 from Mr Gasparon (BB King).....
Ex-Police car for sale - wow? - tpac
and the engine never gets cold

Re the above statement..... errr no where near true, problem is nowadays, they cant find idiots to drive them, no one wants to do the job anymore, can't say I blame them either!

At my nick, there are 4 cars for use, you are lucky to get 2 out!
Ex-Police car for sale - wow? - kam
What! i can\'t believe what you\'ve written.My dream job is to be a traffic officer,but due to the rumoured fierce competiteveness of getting into into traffic i\'ve virtually given up on the idea.Idiots,nobody wants to do the job anymore...pink fluffy dice!
Ex-Police car for sale - wow? - tpac
May I suggest before you attempt to join the job you get up to date with some current affairs..... i.e. The Police recruiting problems, and beleive me they are problems. Out of the 40 odd counties in the country, most are short and having trouble recruiting..... I wonder why????
Later this year it is reported the physical test is coming out of the PIRT (Police initial recruitment test)..... why you ask?? Cos to many people are failing (females I might add).... Dooooh!
Maybe another reduction in the pass marks, and eyesight standards will come too, who knows!
Traffic?? (motoring connection), should not be a problem unless you are in the Mets, as most departments they are short to.
Oh and if you want to be a Sergant, you only need pass part 1 in this day and age, they are short to! I also hear, Hertfordshire are taking Sergents without passing part 1's or 2's.... emmmm desperation kicking in again.
Enough facts for you.... or would you like some more?

Ex-Police car for sale - wow? - reevsie
i dont know where you get the problems with recruiting from, my mate passed his interview for the met police in 2003 and has only just been given a joining date. In the meantime hes driving an Ocado van.
Ex-Police car for sale - wow? - DavidHM
There probably are some bargains out there. Given that a 140k V70 T5 can be half the price of a same age civilian one with half the mileage, there are definite bargains.

But don't believe the hype that they're invariably well looked after. They are well maintained, but that's because they get serious abuse between maintenance.

There was a very sound looking 406 SRi on eBay for about £1900 (120k on an S) that looked like a good deal for somebody. At that money, even if it needs a bit spending on maintenance, you're still getting a straight looking, fastish, comfortable, five year old car for buttons.

I think the main reason that eBay sellers mention that cars are ex-police is because values are generally lower, even for ones that aren't white. If somone bid on the 406 above, they'd be disappointed to find that the car they'd valued as a rep's car was in fact something else and would leave negative feedback.
Ex-Police car for sale - wow? - Sheepy-by-the-Sea
I've mentioned on here before that I ran a K-reg ex-police Senator 3.0 12v for two years.

Well pleased with it, bought from a specialist who sorted out the dash and roof.

Faults attributed to police use included: all four wings (at the very least) had been replaced, so a bit prone to rust. Reverse gear could a bit tricky to engage (over-use reversing on hard shoulders).

Benefits included standard ABS but no electrical gimmicks to go wrong - often a good thing with an older car. Brakes and clutch were from the 24v.

As with many second-hand cars, the police aren't going to replace components on a car which is soon going to be sold - hence brake discs were a bit thin, for example.

If you know what you're buying and test it out you should be OK - certainly for something with a hard-wearing reputation like the Senator. But buying cars from ebay always sounds a bit dodgy.
Ex-Police car for sale - wow? - MichaelR
There was a very sound looking 406 SRi on eBay for
about £1900 (120k on an S) that looked like a good
deal for somebody. At that money, even if it needs
a bit spending on maintenance, you're still getting a straight looking,
fastish, comfortable, five year old car for buttons.


Unless this was some years ago, thats a very poor deal - A 98S is getting on for 8 years old now and I can't imagine an 8 year old 120k 406 ex-police being worth more than £750 at the very best.

Plus they are not fast - not even the light pressure turbo models.
Ex-Police car for sale - wow? - Fullchat
I'll go along with MLC on this one.


Fullchat
Ex-Police car for sale - wow? - nick
eBay is fine for cars - but only if you view first. It's quite nice not to have to go through that haggling process when buying privately. Just watch out you don't get carried away and pay over the odds, and beware of new sellers with no feedback.
Ex-Police car for sale - wow? - v0n
I drive ex Kent police vehicle, real bargain too but I can tell you the car was treated awfully by both users and mechanics. The mess they make out of electrics is just legendary - they removed factory immobiliser, alarm, stereo, left entire airbag installation but removed both passenger and driver airbags, rewired half of the fuse box for their radios, scanners and cameras and drilled through the roof to accommodate three antennas. Seriously, there is no point of looking at the model specs when you bid for ex cop car - you not going to get the extras.
The car was serviced at absolute minimum cost, with 90,000 miles on the clock engine was still running on original cam belt and glow plugs. Wheel bearings were in such bad condition you couldn't move wheels by hand. I imagine this car must have drunk fuel like mad while on duty. The interior had mounting holes drilled everywhere and I still can't take all doughnut jam off the seats.
My advice? There are police bargains out there - cars driven by chiefs, officials, coroner units etc. But steer away from any duty car. Btw - duty cars are not necessarily white, so be careful.
Ex-Police car for sale - wow? - Thommo
I bought a Honda Pan European (sorry motorcycle) from an auction, it was the night that Kent police sold off all their motorcycles as they had disbanded their motorcycle division.

There were 40 odd of these things for sale and they were all the same, that is in a mess. Police lights and other equipment had been ripped out leaving gaping holes in the plastic. No attempt whatsoever was made to pretty them up for sale. The result was that the general public (except me) would not touch them and they were selling for peanuts to dealers. I bought one, tidied it up and made a rather nice profit.

Ex-Police car for sale - wow? - Gen
Why would the police remove the airbags out of interest?
Ex-Police car for sale - wow? - v0n
I think they remove airbags because once the car is frontended officers nailed by the bag to the seat can not leave the car to pursue the offenders...
Now when I think about it - technically speaking I'm quite sure insurance groups for particular car models are based on standard safety equipment sold with vehicle in UK. It's quite possible a claim could be revoked after it turns out the airbags were not present in my ex cop car or the vehicle was stolen because manufacturer installed anti-theft devices were no longer part of the package...
Ex-Police car for sale - wow? - DavidHM
v0n - you do realise that bags inflate and then deflate after impact, don't you? People are only pinned to the seat in bad comedies. Of course the officer could be injured badly enough by an exploding airbag that they couldn't continue the pursuit - but if that happened, the airbag would probably hurt far less than what they were going to hit (dashboard, steering wheel, etc.)

My theory is that there is various other electronic trickery that has to be routed through the dashboard somehow and the no brains, no cost solution to finding the space is to rip out wires that are already there but not necessary for normal functioning.

Although if ever an officer is injured in an accident, then the lawyers would love the negligence aspect of this. (Although I presume that the police force would pay up pretty much immediately, and in large quantitites anyway.)
Ex-Police car for sale - wow? - v0n
DavidHM {P} ? I do know the bags deflate, and I?m not trying to make an urban fest out of this issue but I?ve heard many, many times about police all over the world customizing and removing bags to prevent them from deploying at high speeds when cars are shot at and/or to help policemen leave the vehicle quickly after frontal collision (30 seconds could be crucial), rewiring fuel cut off relays so the car can be still driven after mild collisions etc, etc....

Anyway, In my car installation is in place (in passenger footwell) but bags are gone even though there is no other custom wiring on the way, no sign of previous impact to the front of the car either so I presume they were removed intentionally for some important reason.
Ex-Police car for sale - wow? - midlifecrisis
The traffic cars I drive still have all their airbags. The workshop also fits special blanking plates to which all equipment is screwed. Unfortunate, as mentioned, the seats take a pounding from all our belt kit and are always torn.
Ex-Police car for sale - wow? - Rob C
Would a minor shunt, such as those one sees on "Police Camera Drinking" when a police car punts a perps car to force him to a standstill, cause an airbag to deploy?
or does it have to be a big full-on crash?
Ex-Police car for sale - wow? - DavidHM
I think the threshold is set at about 18 mph for most cars - certainly low enough for there to be very little risk of injury.
Ex-Police car for sale - wow? - HisHonour {P}
When I was a comparatively young man (i.e 35 years ago) I had a policeman buddy who told me his colleagues at Heathrow had a sport which involved seeing what happened if you put a new Police Jag in reverse while travelling forwards at 70 mph!

Don't think I would buy one.
Ex-Police car for sale - wow? - codefarm
>>My theory is that there is various other electronic trickery that has to be routed through the dashboard somehow<<

DavidHM: I think it's more likely cop cars have the airbags removed so they do not deploy in the officer's face in the event he needs to ram somebody off the road.

As far as insurance goes, I believe police are under 'schedule 1' which means they pay their own claims. Midlifecrisis or tpac can probably confirm.
Ex-Police car for sale - wow? - Stuartli
officers nailed by the bag to the seat can not leave the car to pursue the offenders...>>


An airbag deflates virtually as quickly as it inflates - if it didn't it could result in serious injuries.
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What\'s for you won\'t pass you by
Ex-Police car for sale - wow? - Gregory P
Thommo: I was considering buying a police bike like your's from auction. Can you give me more details about the holes you mentioned in the bike (e.g. where and how big) and whether they were mechanically sound. Also, could you give tips about how to spot a good one. I assume you got your's from the oxford auction.

Any help would be welcome.
Ex-Police car for sale - wow? - T Lucas
The thing to remember when buying ex-plod cars is that not all forces are the same,by a long way.As always some police fleets are run in a very professional manner and then there are others that make you think they could not run a drinking party in a brewery.
Some forces seem to think its a good idea to get the equipment fitter drunk,then blindfold him,spin him around and then put the biggest drill in his hand then lock him in the brand new car to see how bad a job he can make of it.
Better run fleets actually think about it a bit more (re-sale)and can fit the equipment with more care.
When i was buying ex-plod cars the Thames Valley Police were head and shoulders above the rest,sensible mileages,reasonable condition,and very few holes.Others,notably Lancashire and Derbyshire were often so bad you had to feel sorry for the plod that had to use them.
Ex-Police car for sale - wow? - frazerjp
For those who are after a vehicle from Thames Valley constabulary the reg no. usually end with BW, FC, JO, WL, or UD with the prefix type registrations as they are registered in Oxford. :)
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Its not what you drive, its how you drive it! :-)
Ex-Police car for sale - wow? - Vansboy
For Ex Police & MoD bikes check out www.forcemotorcycles.com talk to Nick Rymond. Based in Staffordshire, but if you're into bikes, a nice ride on days like today, I guess!

Still never get me on one!!

& if you think of non white cars, as a good bet.Check you're buying ACTUAL Police stock & not a covert vehicle, they bought for surveilance.Could be million miles & as many owners & maintained, hardly ever.

VB
Ex-Police car for sale - wow? - ST1100
Thommo, what are you talking about??

Quote "it was the night that Kent police sold off all their motorcycles as they had disbanded their motorcycle division.
There were 40 odd of these things for sale"

I happen to be ex Kent Police and have keep records of the kent Police fleet since 1989, strangly enough 1990 is the year the Honda Pan european was launched in the UK for Police service. Some Facts for you:
1) Kent Police have NEVER had 40 ST1100s at any one time
2) They have never disbanded the Motorcycle Section!
3) Kent Police were still buying the BMW R80RT in 1990/91
16 of them to be precise.
4) Only one Pan entered service with Kent in 1994 on an L reg, this was based at Sevenoaks, with the bulk of the Pans arriving in 1997. Approximatly 16 bikes were on the section strength at any one time, not including unmarked and off-roaders.

Hope this helps.

Paul
Ex-Police car for sale - wow? - eddiek
I bought and ex police Honda Deauville from a specialist dealer Force Motorcycles of Alrewas. Pretty cheap but I would love to know how to go direct to the auction and get them even cheaper. Bike is great, a few electrical problems, shorts from badly ripped out electrics but nothing I didn;t expect. Id like to upgrade now so if anyone knows the auction houses that various forces sell bikes at, I'd love to know.
Ex-Police car for sale - wow? - Fullchat
!00% agree! Regular high speed runs from stone cold and the odd bit of x country.


Fullchat
Ex-Police car for sale - wow? - Stuartli
>>they will have done lots of motorway miles>>

Only a tiny fraction of the country's police vehicles would be eligible....:-)
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What\'s for you won\'t pass you by
Ex-Police car for sale - wow? - WhiteTruckMan
What happens to the mileage display on cars with factory digital odometers? Are separate (more accurate) speedos/odometers still fitted? I recall looking at a rangie in the late 80's at auction with a big hole in the dash where police speedo had been, and a sign saying to add X to indicated mileage.

are OE speedos more accurate, or are 2 speedos run together in this day and age of electronic units (and if so, does anyine have any experiences of speeds differing? maybe important as regards speeding?)

WTM

Ex-Police car for sale - wow? - Imagos
IIRC Essex ex police cars are defleeted and refurbished back to original manufacturer spec. so shouldn't be an issue here. Having said that there's not many cars that have digital displays that were police cars. The only one i can think of offhand is the Senator. They may have used an anolounge.. who would know?
Ex-Police car for sale - wow? - WhiteTruckMan
I was thinking of vauxhalls (i've seen senators, vectras, astras & zafiras in police use, as well as assorted beemers) and was wondering if the odometers would reflect true mileage?

WTM
Ex-Police car for sale - wow? - Honestjohn
What you want to see are the police workshop records. They should come with the car. Police cars are very well maintained. Timing belts changed long before the mileage the fleet manager knows they will snap. preventative maintenance from experience rather than the pie in the sky nonsense the manufacturers put out.

HJ
Ex-Police car for sale - wow? - WhiteTruckMan
HJ-Although I'm not going to disagree with what you say, comments on this thread lead me to believe that fleet management (presumably including maintainance) can be very variable between different forces.

Also, still hoping to hear if anyone has experience of police cars with multiple speedos. I've driven just one vehicle with multiple speedos (a renault magnum)and found it most confusing. the two never agreed on anything. they couldnt even agree the vehicle was stationary!

WTM
Ex-Police car for sale - wow? - midlifecrisis
Our last old shape vectra estate is just about to go. It's got 127000m, serviced every 9000m and it's totally worn out. Interior trim is falling off, seats are ripped and steering components worn. Engine sounds OK, but I certainly wouldn't buy it. The speedos are calibrated when the car is new and then sealed.
It's spent it's life being smacked up kerbs and driven through fields. Thats just to get our bacon butties!!!
Ex-Police car for sale - wow? - Aprilia
Having bought and sold a few ex-police cars in the past, I wouldn't touch one with a very long pole. They are generally clapped out. The police workshops also have a habit of swapping out parts to fix their running cars. So you auction-bought ex-pol car has a duff alternator/battery etc etc. For some reason the public seems to think they are very highly maintained, but many are pretty ropey (although I guess is varies from force to force).
Ex-Police car for sale - wow? - tack
The problem with buying an ex-plod car is trying to get rid of the kebab smell and kebab grease off the steering wheel and gear lever.
Ex-Police car for sale - wow? - midlifecrisis
Purely lettuce and tomato in my car!!
Ex-Police car for sale - wow? - ihpj
Its like MLC and others have touched on - mechanically these cars are looked after pretty well. I've done time in Service with The Met and now TVP - both seem to take a good approach to mechanical workings of their vehicles - but it is the interiors that will and do take a hammering.

There is a lot of re-hashing that goes on behind the scenes on these road going vehicles to accomodate the extra electric load and devices that get bolted on. Not saying that thats a bad thing - but these exctra wiring looms and cables have to go somewhere - and then ther eis the interior which, like the cars, will see constant use. Consequently, these cars get hammered.

Mechanically they have to be very highly maintained, since in an event of a 'failure' the Force would be held liable - and it's not soemthing they want to be paying out for - so timing belt and routine engine maintance etc. is done before time and religiously. You can't do anyting about the interior - VXs don't have the most hardwearing interiors out there.

I personally wouldn't buy an Ex Job Car - unless it was for a very short term, pressing need/load lugging/short term heavy job that would need the car disposing off at the end. Good luck to the brave soul who'd buy one.

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Im not plain stupid, just a special kind of stoopid.
Ex-Police car for sale - wow? - Aprilia
Mechanically they have to be very highly maintained, since in an
event of a 'failure' the Force would be held liable -
and it's not soemthing they want to be paying out for
- so timing belt and routine engine maintance etc. is done
before time and religiously.


That's what most people seem to think.

We bought a couple of cars to retail on a few years back. Bit surprised to find that the Rover 800 had a growling timing belt tensioner, squealing alternator and a duff battery. There was also excessive play in the rack and few other things I can't remember now. It was a great disappointement.
Also bought a Vectra at the same time - that had numerous small faults (heater blower was shot, wheel bearing making a noise etc.).
I think they knew the cars were about to be disposed of and just ran them 'to the wire' and didn't bother making repairs.
I have been very very wary of ex-pol cars ever since.
Ex-Police car for sale - wow? - ihpj
I agree with you Aprilia - but in any event, the cars have to be safe - else in the case of any failure, the Force will be held liable. Now it's that age old question of what you think might need changing, doesn't neccessaily mean that it does - so to put it another way, you and I could take the same car to an MOT garage and come back with two different results.

As I'm sure you know that a stiff tensioner and squealing alternator - although annoying and inconvenient to have - don't exactly render the car unroadworthy by themselves. But its the voerall aspect. Yes, defintiely be wary - but not because they have been incompetantly maintained - else they'd never have done 100+ miles in three years. I'd be far too wary of the interiors.

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Im not plain stupid, just a special kind of stoopid.
Ex-Police car for sale - wow? - Rishab C
I wouldn't get passed the Party's 'Thought Crime' tests that they started doing last year.
I used to want to work on Traffic Police when I was young, but as soon as I was old enough they were scrapped in my county in favour of cameras on sticks. All rather 1984 ish.
Ex-Police car for sale - wow? - PhilDews
I would guess that it depends on the force county - ie Norfolk cars will probably spend 99% of their time on A & B roads, whereas West Yorks will spend 75% of their life on motorways.

I've been thinking about buying a small car eg Seat Leon/Golf etc as my work car. and then running an ex-police V70 or Omega as a family car...... or even an E-class Merc, but then I read about the problems with them.

The idea is still there... Ex-Police can't possibly be any worse than ex-Fleet.... Police vehicles always seem to be travelling slower than rep cars!!
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Drive Your Way - If anything can, TerraCan
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