Dartmouth College’s Department of Safety and Security (DoSS) is replacing its fleet of Ford Explorers with the Tesla Model Y. The initiative is part of the college’s transition to electric vehicles, and it is expected to be implemented in the coming weeks and months.
As noted in a report from The Dartmouth, the project would introduce four Tesla Model Y crossovers to the Department of Safety and Security’s fleet. As per DoSS director Keiselim Montás, the current fleet of Ford Explorers is at its life’s end. Lieutenant Bradford Sargent also noted that he started considering the idea of an all-electric fleet in late 2021.
“I had seen some articles about different municipal police departments in New England using the Tesla Y model. I thought, for our purposes here on campus, that may be something that I’d like to take an exploratory look at,” he said.
While quite unorthodox, the Tesla Model Y is actually a vehicle that fits the needs of the DoSS. Caroline Mahony, a member of the Sustainability Action Program transportation student interest group, noted that all-electric vehicles like the Model Y excel in activities that are pertinent to the DoSS. The DoSS, after all, does a lot of city driving with lots of starts and stops. The DoSS’ vehicles are also idled over long periods of time.
“We brainstormed that (DoSS) could be a very good target for electric vehicles, particularly because a lot of what (DoSS) does is city driving. Very start and stop, a lot of idling and waiting around… especially in Hanover winter, that includes a lot of… waiting with the heat turned on in their cars, and that’s very inefficient for a combustion engine,” Mahony said.
The Model Y is a prolific vehicle, and it is also Tesla’s best-selling car. In 2023, the Model Y became the world’s best-selling vehicle by volume, outselling the Toyota Corolla, as per estimates from JATO Dynamics. With this in mind, it is no surprise that the Model Y has been used as a police vehicle across the globe. Some companies have even created specific law enforcement packages for the Model Y so that the all-electric crossover could be effectively used for police work.
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