Australian Police

Australian Police

The Thin Blue Line – Australian Police

Police Car Index


NSW Police Cars and Vehicles

Today the NSW Police Force utilises many modes of transport. Yet back in the late 1800’s and early 1900’s the horse and bicycle were the only means of transportation.

In 1915 the Force obtained its first patrol car. By 1916 the benefits of modern transport were being recognised and the Police Force motor vehicle fleet grew to include motorcycles.

Of course, horses and bicycles were not devalued with the advent of the combustion engine and indeed, both are still used today.

In 1925, the then Commissioner of Police, James Mitchell toured the United States of America and parts of Europe to make a detailed study of other police services. Upon his return two major changes were implemented. These were a dramatic increase in the number of Police Motorcycles and Cars, and the establishment of the Public Safety Bureau. The Bureau was initially created to deal with drivers who exceeded the speed limit, but later was expanded to encompass all manner of police duties.

Now police have a variety of vehicles at their disposal including: motorbikes, patrol cars, specialist cars, prison vans, four wheel drives and rescue vehicles.

The police fleet totals 3300 vehicles. It is the largest NSW Government fleet and the biggest police fleet in Australasia.
Each year Fleet Management process around 5600 new and used vehicles that together travel more than 129 million kilometres.
The fleet has a capital replacement value of $90 million and generates annual spending in the motor industry of $170 million.
To provide the quality service we have come to expect, police need the use of patrol cars, trucks, motor cycles, buses, trail cycles, snow cruisers, tractors, fork lifts, caravans and trailers.
It is the job of Fleet Management to make sure each vehicle is registered, mechanically serviced, has compulsory third party insurance and is properly equipped.
They are also responsible for negotiating the vehicle leasing contracts and ensuring all vehicles meet the Australian Design Rule Standards.

Ford Falcon & Holden Commodore Specifications

  • 4 litre 6 cylinder engine (Ford Falcon).
  • 3.8 litre V6 cylinder engine (Holden Commodore).
  • 5.7 or 5.8 litre V8 engine (Holden Commodore/Ford Falcon on high speed pursuit).
  • Modified suspension.
  • Independent rear suspension (IRS) (Holden Commodore).
  • Anti skid braking system (ABS).
  • Limited slip differential (LSD).
  • Performance tyres.
  • Dual air bags.
  • Calibrated speedometer.
  • Heavy duty electrical system.
  • Large capacity fuel tank (Holden Commodore).
  • Performance brake pads.

Police Equipment Specifications Emergency warning system consists of:

  • electronic siren with wail and yelp
  • flashing headlights
  • ripple lights for 360 degree visual warning
  • alley lights
  • take down lights
  • digital message system which provides up to 30 pre programmed messages
  • decals and helicopter ID numbers
  • police radio
  • breath screening device: Lion SD2 or DS190 dual screening device (Alcohol meter)
  • rechargeable torches, with red wands
  • first aid kit: Laederal face mask with one way valve
  • batons
  • fire extinguisher
  • mobile radar and mobile speed cameras are also used.

Police Motor Cycles
The NSW Police Force has two types of bikes – the BMW K1100 and Honda ST 1100

If you are interested in photos of Police Vehicles from the other states
please take time to visit the


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This web site is owned and maintained by Jim Bartok and contains over a hundred and fifty photos maintaining to police vehicles throughout Australia and New Zealand. The photos you have just looked at are courtesy of Jim and his Australian Police Vehicles Website.


All police officers are given rigorous training at the Police Driving Training School in Goulburn.

Take a look at some of the NSW Police Vehicles – Some from the past and some from to-days fleet.

2 thoughts on “Police Car Index

  • Hullo Jim, I’m a writer whose latest novel is set in the country. My question is: What sort of vehicle would a country cop in a small town use? When I was in the bush many years ago, the cop drove a Land Rover but I wonder if that is still the case? Thank you, Gabrielle Lord

    • police land cruisers are everywhere now, I regularly see them out and about in NSW.

      not surprising given that adage “if you want to go to the outback, get a land rover. If you want to come back, get a land cruiser.”


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