Anaheim PD launches pilot for Tesla Model Y LR police cruisers

Credit: Unplugged Performance / Anaheim Police Department

The Anaheim Police Department has officially launched its pilot program to test six Tesla Model Y vehicles as patrol cars, after photos of the outfitted cruisers were spotted last week.

On Monday, the department held a joint media event with Unplugged Performance to showcase the Tesla Model Y Long Range police units, in addition to the two parties both sharing brief videos about the pilot program. The Model Y police cruisers were outfitted by Unplugged Performance’s UP.FIT government and fleet division, with the pilot set to determine how reliable the vehicles are as patrol cars, and how cost-effective they are.

“Congrats to AnaheimPD on today’s announcement,” wrote Unplugged Performance in a post on X. “Choosing an UP.FIT Tesla provides best-in-class officer safety, driving performance, and the lowest total cost of ownership. We’re excited about this pilot program and the opportunity to create a better future together.”

You can see a roughly two-minute video of the vehicles below, as shared in a separate post from UP.

During the initial testing period, the Model Y units will only be driven for one patrol shift, or about 12.5 hours per day. The second phase of testing will include launching the electric vehicles (EVs) 24 hours a day, at which point the department says it will utilize Tesla Superchargers to charge when necessary during patrol shifts.

There are also Level 2 EV chargers at the Anaheim police station and at the agency’s public works headquarters, and they plan to use both of these locations to charge during initial testing.

“Because this is a pilot program, we do not want to make an infrastructure investment (in superchargers) until we know how the vehicles will perform and if they are something we want to fully integrate into our fleet,” Sergeant Jacob Gallacher told Teslarati in an email.

Below are a few additional photos of the Model Y police cruisers, courtesy of Unplugged Performance.

Credit: Unplugged Performance / Anaheim Police Department

Credit: Unplugged Performance / Anaheim Police Department

The City of Anaheim shared an official press release announcing the program on Friday, noting that it purchased the vehicles from Tesla’s available inventory. The department also says the Tesla EVs, initially spotted during a photoshoot last week, were selected in part due to a shortage of vehicles and a need to replace old vehicles as quickly as possible.

The Model Y was also chosen due to its advanced features, rapid acceleration, large amount of storage capacity, affordability, and low maintenance requirements, all of which the department says are crucial for police operations. The agency will use results from the pilot to help determine future decisions as it begins introducing EVs into the fleet.

The news of the pilot program was also shared by Tesla’s North America account on X on Monday, after the company said in February that its standard tech could save police departments over $4,000.

Police departments around the world have been testing out Tesla’s vehicles as patrol cars in the last few years. Recently, Unplugged Performance’s UP.FIT program also outfitted police cruisers in South Pasadena, California, following the city’s announcement last year that it would replace its entire fleet with Tesla EVs.

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Anaheim PD launches pilot for Tesla Model Y LR police cruisers
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