A new police dispatch car will be hitting the road by 2024, as the Singapore Police Force replaces the current fleet with a model that has technological features such as the ability to detect vehicles of interest on the move.
About 300 new Hyundai Tucson five-door compact sport utility vehicles will be rolled out progressively, of which several are already being used by the police's Ground Response Force (GRF) officers to respond quickly to emergency calls, among other duties.
Deputy Superintendent Ng Li Ki, operations officer at the Frontline Policing Division's operations department, said the vehicle was developed in collaboration with the Home Team Science and Technology Agency, with the help of feedback from officers on the ground.
It takes only seconds for officers to detect vehicles of interest while driving the new fast-response car, with the help of the new in-built automated number plate recognition system.
The system can detect the make of the vehicle in question and match the licence plate number to the police database for vehicles of interest.
Senior Assistant Commissioner of Police How Kwang Hwee, director of operations, said the next-generation fast-response car is a "key investment that will further improve the operational effectiveness and safety of our ground officers".
GRF officers are usually the first responders to 999 calls, on top of carrying out other duties such as street patrolling and manning police counters.
The new vehicle will also boast an in-vehicle video recording system that can live-stream high-resolution video footage to the Police Operations Command Centre.
Another key feature is the radio-frequency identification technology in the boot, which can help to track equipment such as riot shields and bulletproof vests in the vehicle, eliminating the need for manual inspection by officers.
Officers can use and control these technological features via a touchscreen dashboard.
The driver and passenger seats have been designed to allow officers wearing police equipment on their belts to enter and exit the vehicle smoothly, and reduce their discomfort during long operations.
The rear seats have also been designed to provide a space for hands cuffed behind the backs of persons in custody, as well as a mechanism for safe seat belt application.
These next-generation fast-response cars also feature external mounted lights that can be used in low-light situations, and a police warning system with a rumbler that emits low-frequency sound waves to warn other motorists of the vehicle's approach.
More capabilities may be added to some of these cars, such as a function to detect, locate and disrupt drones.
Fast-response cars, which are the main police cars in Singapore, have mainly been saloon cars such as the Toyota Corolla Altis and the Hyundai Elantra.
The police's new fast-response car will be the only asset to make its National Day Parade debut this year.
The public will be able to view the vehicle, which will be included in the mobile column as part of the parade, as it makes its way to heartland areas in Woodlands, Bishan and Geylang Serai.