A fleet of BMW 5 Series wagons is now on duty in the Czech Republic with highway patrol officers.
A fleet of BMW station wagons is being added to the highway patrol in the Czech Republic.
The first batch is made up of BMW 540i xDrive models, with all-wheel drive to cope with winter conditions in Europe.
Victoria Police were the first in Australia to upgrade to BMWs in 2018, as police forces made the transition away from homegrown Holden Commodore and Ford Falcon sedans.
The state chose BMW 530d diesel sedans for highway patrol use and a fleet of 80 cars eventually hit the road. All were equipped with the M Sport package, including upgraded brakes and tyres.
NSW Police also opted for the BMW 530d sedan.
The police deals continued with the launch of the facelifted 5 Series range in 2021. Victoria’s police fleet also includes a number of 5 Series wagons – a body style no longer available to the general public.
The Czech cars were delivered by BMW Stratos Auto in Prague.
“An important step for improving the conditions and quality of police work is also the regular change of the vehicle fleet,” said deputy Police Chief for Economy, Colonel Jaromir Bischof.
“I am happy that the police officers will be able to use such modern, safe and fast vehicles as these 10 BMW vehicles in their service.”
BMW sedans are used by police in multiple jurisdictions around the world. They are popular with police in Italy and Germany, and have also reported for duty in the UK.
In addition to the BMW 5 Series highway patrol sedans and wagons already in use in NSW and Victoria, the BMW X5 SUV – which gives police a better vantage point when spotting mobile phone and seatbelt offences in traffic – is being rolled out in Victoria and could soon be added to the police roster in NSW.
The arrival of BMW cars on police fleets in NSW and Victoria initially raised eyebrows amid concerns over cost.
However, government pricing makes them not much dearer than the previous Holden Commodore or Ford Falcon highway patrol sedans.
Another element often missing from the discussion about the cost of police vehicles: the hi-tech equipment that goes into a modern highway patrol sedan is in fact more expensive than the car itself.
A final point worth noting: now that cars are no longer manufactured locally, Australian law enforcement has realised what a bargain the former Holden and Ford performance sedans were for fleet buyers.
Paul Gover has been a motoring journalist for more than 40 years, working on newspapers, magazines, websites, radio and television. A qualified general news journalist and sports reporter, his passion for motoring led him to Wheels, Motor, Car Australia, Which Car and Auto Action magazines. He is a champion racing driver as well as a World Car of the Year judge.