Winter is about to start and the Edsel police is ready to patrol the streets. So you all better behave and follow the law, or the Edsel police will come to get you.
Looks like the lighter Ford body, with the MEL engines. Probably made for fairly fast patrol cars. Interesting that Edsels were so quickly gone to fleet sales.
The cheaper models didn’t have the MEL 410. These would have the 361 FE.
Fun fact-This self-same engine was offered in 1958 Fords only with the police package.
Love that “Precision Fuel Induction”- if you don’t look too closely, it sort of sounds like “injection”, which Chevrolet offered and Ford didn’t…
Given the stuff that AI conjures up these days, I would say that it was a classic AI mix of weird styling and juxtaposition of things that don’t normally quite go together.
But it’s real (I think).
Don’t think I’ve ever seen an Edsel cop car.
I have no idea how common they were, but I have come upon a few references of police departments ordering Edsels.
There’s very few pictures of them – here’s one of a Mississippi Highway Patrol car:
Maybe just being used to it, I’ve never found the Edsel front end to be bad. 1958 was a year of questionable taste, and the Edsel is fairly conservative, and decently proportioned.
While perhaps the “male” counterpoint to the Edsel’s “female” center, the 1968 Pontiac isn’t all that different from the 1958 Edsel. It’s a styling theme that runs counter to most, but it can work well enough – and is certainly distinct.
And the Pontiac sold like hotcakes.
#3 in the market that year.
Nice timing, as we had under 7 inches of snowfall last night. Meanwhile, from the archives…
Montreal and its suburbs (like St. Laurent) have consistently used usual domestic choices for police cars. But for a brief time in the ’60s, Renaults populated their fleet.
Interesting! R8s had traction, accelerated and handled nicely, and had room for a couple of suspects in the back. Comfy seats for long stakeouts.
Wonderful photo! I have spent a lot of time in Montreal and have lots of relatives living there but I have not seen a Renault police car. I guess it was before my time.
I doubt the Renaults were used in front line service. Think I can make out the word ‘Jeunesse’ on their fenders. ‘Youth’ in French.
They may have been used in community work.
Milwaukee will see Montreal’s Renaults and raises their Ramblers.
I wonder if being an in-state supplier had any bearing on that contract.
At least they’re Ambassadors which should have had V8’s.
And they were not ”Gordini Interceptor Pack”… in fact it was used to go meet young people in the city’s parks. ”Aide à la jeunesse” was script on it for that .Nowadays the police force here is very poor but their new microcar does not require opening the window to shoot .
Beau Plymouth Fury 65-66 , photo prise 2 ans avant que le collège st-Laurent devienne le cégep st-Laurent.
Your new patrol cars are named after a female body part.
Volvo is pretty close
Looks like perhaps railway police standing outside of a CNW station?
I bet these guys were pretty pumped when they got these!
Seeing this photo, recalling the poor build quality, and combined with this time of year reminded me of one of those alternate lyrics for “Jingle Bells”:
The Edsel car has burned a valve, and the joker got away!
Interesting thought. Maybe they ARE the precursor to the muscle car (Pontiac GP, etc). Big engine, smaller/lighter chassis.
Not sure what you mean. These smaller Ranger/Pacer (Ford based) Edsels came with a 303 hp 361 FE; the ’58 Ford was available with a 300 hp 352 FE. Essentially the same engine except for a couple of cubic inches.
The larger Corsair/Citation (Mercury based) had a 345 hp 410, but the Mercury had up to 430 cubic inch engines.
I guess that the Edsels could double for other municipal use. Hook large flex hose to them and in the Autumn they can vacuum up leaves. Nice photos, gents!
Quebec Provincial Police took their winter driving seriously. Four snow tires on their cars. Tires likely studded as well. No stopping these Fairmonts. 🙂
Not sure if it was the law back then, but nowadays all cars registered in Quebec are required to have 3PMSF-rated snow tires in the winter (not all-season, although a small but growing number of year-round “all weather” tires are certified for snow/winter use). I assume this applies to police cars as well as civilian vehicles.
That is a recently implemented law. I believe studded tires have been legal in winter for years, on private passenger cars.
The first year it was in effect it was nearly impossible to get good snow tires in Vermont since people from Quebec were buying them all up.
…but better in snow with FWD Aries/Reliant .
If anyone over five feet tall had to be put into the back seat…. Yikes.
There used to be an early 1980s TV program on the Global Television Network in Canada, called: Science International: What Will They Think of Next?
They once had a segment about Finnish Police testing a forward mounted ‘harpoon’ that police cars could use to stop speeding, fleeing cars. The harpoon would puncture rear hatch/trunk lid sheetmetal. No mention of the harpoon puncturing the gas tank by accident. lol
I was thinking the Edsel horsecollar grille would be the perfect location for one or two of these similar harpoons for stopping fleeing cars.
BTW, one of the best science-oriented TV show theme songs on Canadian TV, of the 1980s:
Never understood all the hate for the ‘58 Edsel. Styling was really basic Ford, except for the grille – which was unique and gave the car personality. The tele-touch push buttons in the steering wheel were problematic, but a conventional column selector was also available. Fit, finish and reliability were par for the times. Engines were Ford engineered and really never a problem. IMHO, the car failed because: 1). It failed to live up to the unprecedented hype leading up to its introduction. The public expected a Jetsons type spaceship, not a regular car. 2). Its introduction coincided with a deep recession, decimating sales for all medium and upper medium makes. 3). Key Ford executives, Robert McNamara in particular, hated the car and did everything in their power to kill it.
It was the wrong car for the time.
Looks like the Edsel on the right was the unmarked version for the Detectives, and this must of been before the cherry on the top.
I am pretty sure these are railroad police from the Chicago and Northwestern RR, as they’re posed in front onf a station or division HQ building.
They were surprisingly nimble cars, by the look of things.
Certainly among the less common police car choices.
I know its a b/w pic. Lord it screams “depressing” though.
This was probably late enough in 1958 that Edsel dealers were probably thinking, “Hey, a fleet sale is better than no sale”…
As always you guys come up with the best pictures and links .
Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *
Notify me of new posts by email.
This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.
Copyright 2011 - 2023 Curbside Classics. All Rights Reserved.
Subscribe now to keep reading and get access to the full archive.
Type your email…