Update: Two weeks after our exclusive investigation, Chief Mark Saunders tweeted a video of the official new Toronto Police cruisers. The cruisers have been updated with more prominent decals in white but have the same grey base colour.
— Mark Saunders (@marksaunderstps) September 20, 2016
Toronto police cruisers are getting a drastic makeover.
The police service confirmed to CityNews the entire fleet is being renewed.
Some of the new-look squad cars are already on active duty.
While there are roof lights, the markings on those cars are stealth-like. The writing “Toronto Police,” the TPS logo and the service’s motto “to serve & protect” are decaled in a dark colour that blends into the vehicle.
Toronto Police spokesperson Mark Pugash said a final decision on the design has not been made.
“The final product will not look like that,” he told Citynews. “The cars currently on the road are not a reflection of the final design.”
The new cruisers will be a stark contrast to the ones being phased out – which are bright white with a blue and red stripe across the side.
Toronto Police said there is no additional cost to the public but Pugash wouldn’t answer why the service is making the change.
There has been no word on how many cars are currently in service or when the entire fleet will be changed.
“Sooner rather than later,” Pugash said on the timeline.
— Norm Kelly (@norm) September 7, 2016
According to a tweet by Coun. Norm Kelly, the entire TPS fleet will be dark grey going forward.
Toronto Police won’t confirm the information on the vehicle’s colour in the Ward 40 councillor’s tweet but Pugash said “they will not be white.”
CityNews showed a picture of one of the dark grey cars now on the road to former Toronto Traffic Services officer Tim Burrows.
“It’s a great looking car in terms of staying inconspicuous,” said Burrows, who currently consults and trains law enforcement officials in the United States.
“It’s a great car for using on the highways for doing enforcement for distracted driving”, he said “but when it comes to a situation of crime prevention visibility and just giving the idea to the public that there are more police out there than there really are, I don’t see it as a really great move.”
Up until the early 1960s Toronto Police cruisers were all unmarked and were various colours. They were then painted bright yellow. Those cars were replaced in 1986 with the white ones.