Astra Sports Tourer showcases future crime-fighting technology
In line with the directive from Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police, Bernard Hogan-Howe for the police car to be the mobile office, the estate has been decked out with three computers armed with forensics and face-recognition software. Several high-quality cameras record activity outside – scanning suspect’s faces on a high street, for example – and inside the vehicle.
Driving officers also gain from high-speed broadband, giving up to an extra two hours in the field. Video, such as CCTV footage, can be downloaded and streamed on-the-move and uploaded to a central crime database while officers can compress video files in transit.
Meanwhile witness of crime photography is collected via 3G connectivity and the vehicle is also equipped with software that predicts future crime hotspots. Officers are also able to dock Toughbook laptops and rugged smart phones.
Black box equipment collects data on the Astra including speed, location and miles per gallon amongst numerous others.
Vauxhall produced the base vehicle at its facility in Ellesmere Port, Cheshire and carried out the special conversion at its base at Millbrook Proving Ground, Bedfordshire. The carmaker, which says it’s the number one supplier to police fleets with a 70 per cent market share of competitive segments, also formed a consortium with specialist firms. These include Daetech Systems, TetraTAB, Airmax Group, Innaxys,Trans-tag, Kelvin Connect, Civica, Videolatitude, Imagebase and Facewatch.
This is the second year running that Vauxhall has won ACPO’s challenge after romping to victory with a futuristic Ampera extended range electric vehicle last year
‘This British-built and converted Astra Sports Tourer will help make police officers more efficient. It becomes their office and allows them to spend more time on the road fighting crime,’ said Dick Ellam, Vauxhall’s special vehicles manager.