BELLEVILLE — The Belleville Police Department is rolling out its six new 2013 Ford Police Interceptors this week.
The department previously ordered Crown Victoria cruisers but those were discontinued last year. Ford's Police Interceptor model replaces the Crown Victoria and is based on the Ford Taurus.
Capt. Don Sax said residents should start to see the new cars, two unmarked and four marked, on the road this week.
The cars cost the city about $25,000 each from the low bidder Reuther Ford. The trade-in discounts the city receives are offset by the cost to retrofit the new cars for police use.
This is the third year the city has purchased all-black police cars instead of black-and-white marked cars.
Sax said the new Police Interceptors might be mistaken for black-and-white marked cars, but they are actually painted all black. The sides of the cars just feature large white decals with the department's logo.
An all-black vehicle is about $1,200 cheaper than a two-colored car.
Police Chief William Clay announced the cost-saving measure in 2010. Clay planned to have the older cars taken out of service one-by-one and replaced until all marked cars are converted.
With the new Police Interceptors, the city now has 27 marked police vehicles in its fleet, including spare cars, Sax said. Of those cars, 18 are all-black, six are black-and-white and three are all-white.
The department switched from all-white cars with two-tone blue lettering to black-and-white cars in 2004.
The city got its last order of four Crown Victoria police cruisers in 2011. The $66,817 bid, which included trade-in vehicles, went to Wright Automotive.
Contact reporter Jacqueline Lee at email@example.com or 239-2655. Follow her on Twitter at twitter.com/BNDBelleville.