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A substantial partition separates the front and rear seating areas; shotgun mounts are built in. The rear seat can be fitted with surveillance equipment and sensors capable of detecting biological and chemical weapons and radiation threats. Ballistic protection is available for the front doors and the dash.

Carbon’s engineers have also planned advanced electronic gear: infrared cameras for enhanced night vision, a means of reading and cross-referencing hundreds of license plates a minute and a console printer to produce speeding tickets expeditiously.

In its seven years, Carbon Motors has raised venture capital, secured a manufacturing plant, built a running prototype and taken 13,000 reservations. What it needs to begin production is a $310 million loan from the Energy Department. The department’s Advanced Technology Vehicle Manufacturing Loan Program has already doled out $8.5 billion for hybrid and electric cars.

Wheels Blog: Hot Pursuit: What's Your Favorite Cop Car From TV or the Movies?

What’s Your Favorite Cop Car from TV or the Movies?

A scene from "The Blues Brothers."

In this Don Sherman’s article The Next Generation of Police Cruisers — he took a look at the cars that will be vying to replace the Ford Crown Victoria Police Interceptor, which will cease production late next year, as the favorite ride of the men and women in blue.

The Crown Vic has had an exceptionally long run as a police car — some two decades — but there have been other stalwarts in other periods. Consider, for instance the Dodge Monacos of the late 1970s, which crashed onto the screen — literally — in “The Blues Brothers” the 1980 John Belushi-Dan Aykroyd funk fest.

Need we mention that Jake and Elwood’s very own Bluesmobile was a decommissioned Dodge patrol car? (Elwood’s description: “It’s got a cop motor, a 440-cubic-inch plant. It’s got cop tires, cop suspension, cop shocks. It’s a model made before catalytic converters, so it’ll run good on regular gas.” The cigarette lighter, alas, wasn’t up to snuff.)

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