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Calling all cars: Police car retrospective

CNET Car Tech posts photos of police cars past and present.

Police car

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Last week Ford announced its new Police Interceptor model, which is based on the new Taurus and is replacing the outgoing Crown Victoria model. Recognizing that Ford's Police Interceptor won out against the previously popular Chevrolet Caprice patrol vehicle, we took a stroll through the history of police vehicles.

Police have always been at the forefront of automotive technology, incorporating telecommunications gear and computers long before similar devices found their way into civilian cars. Motorola sold the first two-way radio for police cars in 1940, and it wasn't until the '60s that Citizens' Band radio came into wide use.

Police cars have become increasingly sophisticated, now sporting laptop computers with broadband connections for quick access to databases, specially designed seats to fit police equipment, and heavy-duty suspensions.

Competition for the law enforcement market is growing, too, with Dodge introducing a police package Charger in 2009 and Chevrolet announcing the revival of the Caprice nameplate for its own Police Patrol Vehicle.