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Published on June 22nd, 2009 | by Jerry James Stone

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Los Angeles Sheriffs Getting Electric Mini Coopers

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LA County Sheriffs stuck driving Crown Vics are about to be left feeling tragically un-hip. Their Board of Sups just approved a deal with BMW to lease 17 fully electric MINI Coopers.

Approved on Tuesday, the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department will lease the MINI Es for only $10 a month. With a market lease rate of $850, automaker BMW offered up the bargain price in exchange for deputy’s feedback.

Um, BMW, I too will give you feedback for $10 MINI E lease.

I’m sure the MINI’s will sport the standard police flare, but my vote is for the pimped out–and unrelated–version above by Agent Provocateur. Not that the 60’s style isn’t cool too.

BMW wants feedback for how the MINI Es drive and handle on Los Angeles County road conditions, Sheriff’s spokesman Steve Whitmore said. You know, like can they chase Ford Broncos and stuff like that.

On top of the discount price–which constitutes a gift to the county–MINI USA will also be installing charging stations and handling all vehicle maintenance and repairs. The MINI Es will be accompanying the police force’s full size Crown Vics, Caprice Classics, and more recently Dodge Chargers.

Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors approved the gift as it supports the county’s strategic goal of promoting environmental responsibility. The cars will be used for administrative, recruitment, volunteers, and other specialized units.

“It’s clean-energy, it’s cost-effective and it could prove to be a boon for the county,” Whitmore said.

The MINI E model is currently only available to drivers in the U.S. as part of a field trial. And only 23 of the 450 Mini E prototypes have been delivered thus far.

While here in the States a MINI cop car might sound a bit ridiculous, it’s not that odd of an idea. The Cooper has a long history of being a police vehicle. Even Oregon’s Tualatin Police Department has one!

Here are some MINI cop cars, both real and fake:

Source: AllCarsElectric

Photos: AROnline, MalaysiaMiniLover, Classic Vehicles on Flickr, CincinnatiMINI, PoliceMINICooper, ForBunk on Flickr



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About the Author

is a web developer, part-time blogger, and a full-time environmentalist. His crusade for all things eco started twenty years ago when he ditched his meat-and-potatoes upbringing for something more vegetarian-shaped. His passions include cooking, green tech, eco politics, and smart green design. And while he doesn't own a car anymore, he loves to write about those too. Jerry studied at Cal Poly in San Luis Obispo, CA. During his time there he was a DJ at the campus station KCPR and he also wrote for the campus paper. Jerry currently resides in San Francisco, CA with his cat Lola. You can stalk him on Twitter @jerryjamesstone.



  • http://spiritof1976.livejournal.com Spiritof1976

    Imagine what the police chases will be like!

    I’m thinking The Italian Job with the boot on the other foot.

  • http://spiritof1976.livejournal.com Spiritof1976

    Imagine what the police chases will be like!

    I’m thinking The Italian Job with the boot on the other foot.

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  • offsettype

    …and for the American recovery… the BUY AMERICAN… in honor of American jobs… the built by Americans… middle class America… the American made automobile choices on the table for the L.A. County Sherriff’s Department were….?? Whom? What?

  • offsettype

    …and for the American recovery… the BUY AMERICAN… in honor of American jobs… the built by Americans… middle class America… the American made automobile choices on the table for the L.A. County Sherriff’s Department were….?? Whom? What?

  • shdwsclan

    Well, well, well…..technically, isnt this an insult to detroit, and in extension, to American jobs….to use foreign vehicles for gov’t contracts…

    In retaliation, i suggest stop buying apple products….they are from california….

  • shdwsclan

    Well, well, well…..technically, isnt this an insult to detroit, and in extension, to American jobs….to use foreign vehicles for gov’t contracts…

    In retaliation, i suggest stop buying apple products….they are from california….

  • Roger

    Isn’t this the same dork that limited the firepower of the police force to “set an example” for gun control that caused the fiasco where the body armor guy couldn’t get taken out until the police went to the local firearm shop and “borrowed” some better weapons?

  • Roger

    Isn’t this the same dork that limited the firepower of the police force to “set an example” for gun control that caused the fiasco where the body armor guy couldn’t get taken out until the police went to the local firearm shop and “borrowed” some better weapons?

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  • Bob

    Uhhh, wtf??? Cali is in a gigantic Debt black hole. Solution: Buy Expensive Cars?

  • Bob

    Uhhh, wtf??? Cali is in a gigantic Debt black hole. Solution: Buy Expensive Cars?

  • Nick Kasoff

    I don’t know why you say they’ll be “feeling tragically un-hip.” I’ve driven a MINI for almost five years now, and it’s the hippest car I’ve ever owned.

  • Nick Kasoff

    I don’t know why you say they’ll be “feeling tragically un-hip.” I’ve driven a MINI for almost five years now, and it’s the hippest car I’ve ever owned.

  • BobsanIdiot

    Leasing for 10$ a month is not expensive you moron.

  • BobsanIdiot

    Leasing for 10$ a month is not expensive you moron.

  • jdubya

    Wow, pathetic how some people are unable to read these days.

    Ford ain’t leasing those Crown Vic’s to the LASD for $10 nor are they providing support. Dodge? $10? LOL, hardly.

    BUY AMERICAN for $10/month? Good freaking luck.

    Now, let’s see how that helps LASD save money. Let’s assume they go towards community service, parking enforcement, etc. No Ford, Dodge lease at $10+, instant savings there. Free charging stations, whereas Ford and Dodge do not provide gas stations for free.

  • jdubya

    Wow, pathetic how some people are unable to read these days.

    Ford ain’t leasing those Crown Vic’s to the LASD for $10 nor are they providing support. Dodge? $10? LOL, hardly.

    BUY AMERICAN for $10/month? Good freaking luck.

    Now, let’s see how that helps LASD save money. Let’s assume they go towards community service, parking enforcement, etc. No Ford, Dodge lease at $10+, instant savings there. Free charging stations, whereas Ford and Dodge do not provide gas stations for free.

  • http://bellybuttons.tumblr.com Tyrone

    These are awesome! There’s a video on YouTube of a Smart Car with a Hayabusa engine. If police had those, it would be amazing.

  • http://bellybuttons.tumblr.com Tyrone

    These are awesome! There’s a video on YouTube of a Smart Car with a Hayabusa engine. If police had those, it would be amazing.

  • Ken

    What?

    Bob, this is a $10 a month lease on a vehicle that uses no fuel, if anything this is a way to save money. They probably spend $100 a month putting gas in patrol cars for non-patrol work as it is so these electric cars being available for promotional and crowd control uses saves money as well as their standard cruisers for more demanding police work.

    Offsettype, these cars are being leased to them at BMWs loss since it took them millions to develop and build these things and only produced a few hundred of them. These cars aren’t replacing any of the traditional Domestic cruisers (which are made in Canad or Mexico mostly anyways) but supplementing their force. The electric motor and drivetrain used in these vehicles was developed and installed in Southern California anyways so in a way these are more “American” than a Canadian built Charger.

  • Ken

    What?

    Bob, this is a $10 a month lease on a vehicle that uses no fuel, if anything this is a way to save money. They probably spend $100 a month putting gas in patrol cars for non-patrol work as it is so these electric cars being available for promotional and crowd control uses saves money as well as their standard cruisers for more demanding police work.

    Offsettype, these cars are being leased to them at BMWs loss since it took them millions to develop and build these things and only produced a few hundred of them. These cars aren’t replacing any of the traditional Domestic cruisers (which are made in Canad or Mexico mostly anyways) but supplementing their force. The electric motor and drivetrain used in these vehicles was developed and installed in Southern California anyways so in a way these are more “American” than a Canadian built Charger.

  • Leon

    Ouch… Don’t they want to know how the MINIe works in Colorado? I’ve got a whole stack of $20s here….. I would pay 40K for this car today. Lease? Does EV1 ring any bells?

  • Leon

    Ouch… Don’t they want to know how the MINIe works in Colorado? I’ve got a whole stack of $20s here….. I would pay 40K for this car today. Lease? Does EV1 ring any bells?

  • Corian

    To those who are complaining about the police force not “Buying American:”

    You obviously don’t realize that the Ford Crown Victoria, Dodge Charger and Chevy Impala are all made in….. CANADA!

  • Corian

    To those who are complaining about the police force not “Buying American:”

    You obviously don’t realize that the Ford Crown Victoria, Dodge Charger and Chevy Impala are all made in….. CANADA!

  • http://www.turboaddict.com/ Chris

    Dang! I wish I could lease a Mini E for $10 a month… But, will they really be able to catch anyone with an electric car? haha. I guess if they use it for “non-criminal” activities and actually incorporate them into their everyday use at the stations, they will see benefits from low annual cost and no pollution. After reading so many articles these days on new auto breakthroughs, this one is very cool.

    Props to the LA Sheriffs! But.. I think it would be cool to see some cops catching people with a Mini S, haha. Fast, economical, and a very beastly little machines. Until then… :)

  • http://www.turboaddict.com/ Chris

    Dang! I wish I could lease a Mini E for $10 a month… But, will they really be able to catch anyone with an electric car? haha. I guess if they use it for “non-criminal” activities and actually incorporate them into their everyday use at the stations, they will see benefits from low annual cost and no pollution. After reading so many articles these days on new auto breakthroughs, this one is very cool.

    Props to the LA Sheriffs! But.. I think it would be cool to see some cops catching people with a Mini S, haha. Fast, economical, and a very beastly little machines. Until then… :)

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  • Not what you think

    The MINIs are only going to be used for the Execs & Ticket/Traffic Nazis…not regular police work.

  • Not what you think

    The MINIs are only going to be used for the Execs & Ticket/Traffic Nazis…not regular police work.

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