Chevrolet Caprice PPV Will Expire This Year, No Direct Replacement Planned21
Along with the news surrounding the official demise of the 2017 Chevrolet SS, another Holden-turned-Chevrolet will also officially expire this year.
The Chevrolet Caprice PPV (Police Pursuit Vehicle) will be no more when Holden manufacturing goes idle for good later this year, and there will not be a direct replacement for the rear-wheel drive, Zeta-based sedan.
The Caprice PPV was introduced in the North American market for 2011 and has been sold to fleets in small numbers since. Like the retail passenger car market, many fleets have moved towards crossovers and utility vehicles for their latest police cruisers.
For now, it’s up in the air as to what Chevrolet plans to offer for local police forces across the country other than the Tahoe PPV.
The Caprice’s demise was first reported here in 2014, as Holden stated it “didn’t see” a future replacement on the horizon.
- Sweepstakes Of The Month: Win a 2023 Corvette Z06 Convertible. Details here.
It is interesting how GM has basically punted / given up on certain commercial markets — specifically police-pursuit vehicles and also small delivery trucks. I know they have the Nissan re-badged City Express, but Ram and Ford are dominate the market.
I guess GM, although huge, determined there are certain markets not worth their time. If so, I suppose that’s good discipline but just seems a bit odd (esp in the case of the delivery trucks/vans, as GM would seem to be able to leverage their huge dealership network as a positive in that case).
I recall reading somewhere that GM was trying to “get away” from fleet sales. So that may be why. Who knows for sure.
Tyler you nailed it. Fleets are very low profit to no profit. Ford makes little as they have killer low prices and Chrysler quality has hampered some departments from buying from them.
Also most departments are going to cross overs now. The Tahoe is too expensive but the Traverse appears like it could be a viable player if they can price it right and still make money.
Rob the rebadged Nissan is mostly due to the fact GM just can not afford to do the more profitable lines and new vans right now. They are working on one to replace this but it is not ready and the Nissan is just filling in till they get their models out. This segment took off faster than many anticipated and they got caught out.
The Caprice suffered from too high a price and the fact many departments have rules that do not let them purchase vehicles outside the USA.
Many departments like them but can not afford many or are even permitted to buy them.
Right now the Explorer is ruling the market and if GM can make money they should look to challenge it. If there is no money then why bother?
City budgets are cut to the bone and they will buy the cheapest and most reliable so you have to make the numbers work.
Note GM for decades made and sold many police cars but made little on them. Fleet prices left little meat on the bone.
Scott I thought I recalled you mentioning in the past how these types of fleet sales were profitable as apposed to daily rentals? I could be mistaking.
As far as vans go, if there wasn’t any profit in these types of fleet sales, I can’t see why Benz would bother making them. Plus it doesn’t seem to hurt there image.
I never said fleets were profitable at least not in most cases. Police sales are not high profit. Also the dump sales on rentals were very unprofitable.
Now fleet sales of vans can be if the right deals are brokered.
Like everything there are no absolutes but profits are rare.
I have seen some comment that they are profitable but that does not make it true.
Even like in the tire industry OE tire sales is a major money loser for most tire companies as auto makers do not want to pay anything for tires unless they have some special performance need like a Corvette or low rolling resistance need like the Bolt.
Now on trucks they have enough volume they may make a profit.
The key to the future will be to keep fleets low where there is little profit to keep ATP and resale up.
Is GM working on a new full size van by any chance?
Yes according to reports two vans are in the works but it will a little while before they arrive as money is going to new trucks and other projects first that are more important.
This is why they are still with the old van and why they stuck in the Nissan City to fill the gap they had till theirs is ready.
With the introduction of the new Traverse, I think GM could offer a PPV version of it to fill the void. Police are flocking to the Explorer, and the new Traverse is positioned directly at it now. While the Tahoe is popular, the Explorer is still the top choice for regular street patrol SUVs. A few improvements to the Traverse, maybe even a twin turbo 6, and GM would have a great offering.
That seems like a good idea — but if something like that were the plan, why wouldn’t GM announce it when they announced the new Traverse? Thus, when the fact that the Caprice PPV is going away gets confirmed a couple days later, police departments/cities could now a (partial) replacement is on the way.
The fact that GM didn’t suggests they don’t see this as a lucrative market, beyond what they are doing with the Tahoe.
Looks like another half-hearted effort.
A AWD 3.6TT Impala could fill the void! And new Traverse.
That is going to leave the Charger as the only car based high performance police vehicle. Auburn Hills will be glad to hear that.
The Ford TT V6 Taurus has a lot of power and AWD. A local department employ a number of these and even a local Tuner was willing to tune them for 500 HP.
I actually would like to pick one of these up at auction and bring it over to Livernois or some thing one day. Would be a fun car, a little wierd having the column shifter… I’ve know a few people that picked up the older Impala or Crown Vics and they have been good reliable cars. The maintenance usually is up kept on these things. Unless your in Detroit…
They come up once in a while and as they age out there will be more.
Some police cars are well kept and others are beat to death. Just depends on who drove them and what department maintained them.
We had one local department in the 80’s here that bought Diplomat police cars and they were slow. So they took the remaining F41 Nova cruiser and rebuilt them from top to bottom. They had 350 engines and were the fasted cars they had. Funny today they would be seen as slow. But the F41 would make them handle like the time period Z/28.
The solution is unbelievably obvious: USE THE DAMNED ALPHA PLATFORM. Not the one underpinning the ATS, the extended version underpinning the CTS. Introduce a next-gen Impala riding on this platform and you can replace the current FWD Impala, Caprice PPV and SS with a single sedan. Engines would include the 2.0L Turbo I4 as the base engine with the 3.6L V6 as an option, with AWD available for both. An Impala SS with an LT1 under the hood would act as a direct replacement for the Chevrolet SS, while maybe a special LT4-powered Impala could slot in above the SS and compete with the Charger Hellcat. A new Impala PPV would replace the Caprice, available to law enforcement with the 2.0L Turbo I4, 3.6L V6 and LT1 V8 (why not? It wouldn’t be the first time…), with AWD being available as an option for the first two engines.
Pricing would increase slightly for this new Impala over the current FWD model, but I can’t imagine it would start too much higher. Maybe in the low 30’s tops. Yes, the extended Alpha platform underpins the nearly $46k base CTS, but the Epsilon II platform underpins the XTS at $45,495 while the current Impala, sharing that platform, starts at $27,300. So it’s certainly possible to keep the price low. Also, the ATS starts $34,595. It’s smaller, but it’s still an Alpha. The removal of various luxury materials will certainly bring the cost down.
Fuel economy would see a noticeable gain with the move to Alpha. The CTS manages 22/30mpg with the 2.0L and 20/30mpg with the 3.6L, compared to the 18/28mpg rating for the current Epsilon Impala 3.6L. The 2.5L I4 Impala gets the same 22/30 as the CTS 2.0L, but with 71 fewer horsepower and 104 fewer lb-ft of torque. The current Impala V6 is also down 30hp and 21lb-ft of torque compared to the Cadillac’s V6.
A next-gen Impala moving to Alpha would also allow the Buick LaCrosse to better fill its role of competing in the large FWD premium sedan market, and it would eventually be left alone as GM can’t keep making the XTS forever (a car that happens to interfere with the sales of both the CTS and CT6).
It’s not like this would cost GM an excessive amount of money, either. My plan for model consolidation has THREE different cars under the SAME BRAND replaced with a SINGLE MODEL. And, thanks to an existing U.S. plant pumping out Alpha-based vehicles, this eliminates the need for foreign manufacture, international shipping and the construction of an entirely new plant.
Let’s review: three models rolled into one, two plants instead of one, improved fuel economy, vast increases in power and, of course, a dramatic improvement to vehicle dynamics. So, GM, I have to ask: why not?
This doesn’t seem like some crazy idea. This isn’t a completely new car for a low-volume niche market, this is one sedan replacing three separate sedans you already make, the likes of which account for a total of 101,040 sales in 2016, which is nothing to scoff at. Sure, you sell more than twice that in Equinoxes and five times that in Silverados, but it’s only 15k less than the Traverse and just a couple grand shy of the Tahoe. Obviously there are people out there that still want sedans. I think a business case can be made.
I too have promoted this idea but I do realize that this is not as much a no brainer as some would like to make it to be.
Large sedans sales are declining. Chevys sales over $40K get more and more difficult to do outside trucks and the Vette.
Here is the problem. While you would sell a decent amount of these what else could you sell that would provide more profit and return on the investment while increasing in sales yearly. The Cross Overs.
I would want nothing more than a Impala on the Alpha and offer it with a 4-6-and 8 engine with a Camaro Suspension under it.
But I also know how automakers work and how they have to pick and choose their resources to maximize sales and profits. While this is a doable and cool car the problem is there are much more profitable and growing ventures they can under take.
In the end it is about making money and there is more to be made else where with models that will not taken incentives to spur sales as we have seen in the Camaro of late since it is at the tipping point money wise.
Now I do think if they moved this to Buick you could market as a Holden, Vauxhall, Opel, Buick globally in nearly every market there is. This would leverage the volume out to where you could sell a lot of then and not have to expect North America to take them all. The price would be much easier to take in the Buick line also as it is a little higher and people will be willing to pay it for a well optioned well build RWD and AWD model.
I am a Chevy owner and fan but there are limits on price people will pay for a sedan. We have seen it here with the SS. Once you get to this price point there are much bigger names in the field that give many more options. Sure you get the die hard Chevy fans but today you need more than that.
Now to do this on the Alpha it will need reworked. We know RHD will come in the updated version of the platform with Cadillac and the Camaro getting it next time around. That one is not as far off as you may think as I expect the ATS and CTS replacements to receive the updates.
For The impala to have a change on the Alpha they really need to sell more than 100K units yearly. They also would need to show they could outsell a SUV or Cross Over that could also receive the investment that would sell approaching 200K unit or more.
There is just so much more to this than just basic logic on the one car. Yes the small case makes sense but you have to inject all they have to look at today in approving a project. This is why some really cool cars get left on the table and they build a CUV that sells 250K units or more like the Nox. Boring but much more profitable.
+1 Camaroguy on the idea as it is pretty much what I too would love to see but the pesky reality of how business works gets in the way every time.
I agree with everything but the name change. I’ve always loved the Caprice name more! It stayed RWD and while the Holden isn’t as long as I’d like at least it stayed fullsize! I hate SUVs and wish there could be at least 1 traditional big American sedan no better name for it than Caprice. Just my opinion. I had huge hopes for this car and they foolishly didn’t sell it to the public or build in North America for the police. The cars only flaw.
NYPD has a few of the Chevy Traverse’s they’re experimenting with in their patrol fleet. With the popularity of the Explorer Police Utility, this would be an obvious path as a replacement to the Caprice PPV. It’s a shame, I’ve had the pleasure of driving one of the 6.0L V8 equipped Caprice PPV’s and it is an awesome rush to drive. I’m not a fan of Dodge/Chrysler – the local officers I’ve talked to that have the V6 Chargers despise them.
Here in North Texas, these vast majority of the suburb municipalities (excluding Dallas and Fort Worth) are going exclusively to the Tahoe for marked patrol vehicles. Garland was exclusively using the Caprice PPV as their marked patrol vehicles from 2012-2015, but starting in 2016 they’re switching over to all Tahoes (excluding their unmarked/ghost graphics slick-tops). DART is the only other department that had gone exclusively with Caprice PPV’s in the area that I know of, and they’re going back to the Dodge Charger once production ends.
The en masse popularity of the Explorer Utility is amazing to me because, aside from Fort Worth, the only other department I’ve seen that has them are DPS troopers, and a few public school district and college police forces. It’s predominantly the Tahoe PPV, or the Charger and that’s about it (Dallas County Sheriff’s office has a few of the Taurus Police Interceptors, and there’s a few scattered throughout other departments as well, mostly on the Tarrant County side).