SPAIN’S National Police have added 300 environmentally-friendly ‘Z cars’ to its fleet of vehicles.
The plug-in hybrids will be rolled out along with the installation of another 200 charging points at police buildings nationwide.
Known as “Type Z” radio patrol cars, they are modified Peugeot 3008s that use electric power in urban areas and switch to petrol on the open road.
They are being rented on a four-year lease arrangement signed with Alphabet, as part of the long-term decarbonization plan of the fleet.
Cars have been distributed among all autonomous communities that have National Police headquarter sites.
Some 848 hybrid vehicles are now in service, with another 268 camouflaged plug-in “K-cars” being introduced in July.
More about hybrid cars
These new types of car, in development for over 40 years, see average fuel savings of 40%.
A full recharge can be done in less than 2 hours, with an on-board lithium-ion battery that gets ‘topped’ by kinetic energy produced by engine-braking.
The technology has been used in Formula One for the last few seasons, now known as “the hybrid age”.
The car’s drivetrain harnesses electrical energy in urban settings where slower speeds are an inefficient use of the traditional petrol engine.
Another immediate advantage is the drop in carbon-monoxide fumes that pedestrians would normally inhale in such an environment.
Using battery alone, the 3008 hybrid can travel up to 59 kilometres, or 37 miles.
On the open road, the petrol engine would start up automatically, when the time is right.