You use it to carry an unruly labrador, but the police can use it to carry highly trained alsatians.
Skoda has made a habit of turning its practical family cars into "blue-light" vehicles for the emergency services. There have been Scala police cars and Karoq police cars, but the latest car to make the switch is the Kodiaq SUV, which is now being offered to police forces in the U.K. in dog van guise.
Sure, Skoda’s publicity images don’t really show the sort of dogs your average copper will carry around – they’re more household pets, to be honest – but it’s a demonstration of just how the family car has been turned into a workhorse. Chief among the modifications are the two dog kennels fitted in the rear of the car, both of which are air-conditioned and meet the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (RSPCA) requirements.
Built into the space that would ordinarily be the trunk, the kennels come with temperature monitoring and a front escape hatch, allowing the dogs to evacuate the vehicle quickly if needs be. There’s also a storage area for safety equipment in front of the kennels.
But aside from provisions for our four-legged friends, the Kodiaq dog vehicle also gets features specific to the humans who will operate it. There’s 360-degree emergency services lighting and an engine run lock system, which keeps the engine running when the key has been removed. That means the engine can essentially be used as a generator, powering lights, radios or computers without running down the battery.
On top of that, the vehicle has of course been decked out in the familiar police markings, with reflective blue-and-yellow stripes down the sides.
As with other Kodiaqs, Skoda is offering the dog vehicle to customers with a choice of two- and four-wheel drive, giving police forces the ability to take their dogs off the beaten track, while there’s a choice of four engines. Two gasoline and two diesels offer power outputs ranging from 148 to 236 horsepower.
Henry Williams, the head of fleet at Skoda U.K., said the Kodiaq was a “versatile” model that could offer enough to keep the dogs safe and well cared for.
“We know police dogs play a pivotal role in an emergency service response; therefore, they need an environment that provides the appropriate level of safety and comfort to get them to and from an emergency,” he said. “The versatile Kodiaq police dog vehicle has all of the necessary features to ensure police dogs are well looked after when going about their vital work.”
Gallery: Skoda Kodiaq dog van
ŠKODA’s K-9 Kodiaq: New police dog vehicle joins blue-light fleet
› ŠKODA adds specialist Kodiaq police dog vehicle to its blue-light fleet
› Bespoke SUV offers raft of dog-friendly features including air conditioned dog kennels
› Kodiaq dog vehicle complies with RSPCA and DEFRA requirements
› Vehicles available to order now
Milton Keynes, 19 March 2020 – The state-of-the-art Kodiaq is the latest model in ŠKODA’s line-up to be converted into a specially designed police dog unit.
Police forces looking for a versatile vehicle that can safely transport canine teams to emergency situations now have the ultimate solution. The Kodiaq dog vehicle comes fitted with a range of driver assistance and safety features that ensure a police dog can travel safely and securely to any emergency.
The large SUV provides greater visibility for the driver and offers increased ground clearance to help enable access to remote locations. The Kodiaq is available with a choice of four engines: two petrol and three diesel with power outputs ranging from 150PS to 239PS. Forces can choose between two or four-wheel drive and manual or DSG transmissions.
Some of the standout features on the car include two air-conditioned dog kennels with temperature monitoring, purpose built into the rear of the vehicle.
The dog can also evacuate the vehicle quickly if needed thanks to a front escape hatch with drop glass built into each kennel. Additional emergency equipment can be stored in an area in front of the kennels.
It’s not just dogs the vehicle caters for. It also comes fitted with all of the necessary blue-light requirements such as 360’ emergency services lighting and an engine Run Lock system, which keeps the engine running while the key is removed from the ignition. The function enables a useful power supply for lights, radios or safety equipment computers, without the battery going flat.
The conversion has been built in conjunction with the Policing Authority and complies with RSPCA and DEFRA requirements, and is available for order now.
Henry Williams, Head of Fleet, ŠKODA UK, said: “We know police dogs play a pivotal role in an emergency service response; therefore, they need an environment that provides the appropriate level of safety and comfort to get them to and from an emergency. The versatile Kodiaq police dog vehicle has all of the necessary features to ensure police dogs are well looked after when going about their vital work.”
Bespoke conversions for emergency service fleets can be provided through ŠKODA’s ‘one-stop’ shop package. Alongside hassle-free finance solutions, ŠKODA fleet can provide the vehicles fully converted to suit specific requirements, and fleet managers have the peace of mind that the conversion, breakdown recovery, service, maintenance and repair requirements are built into one package.