MORE than 100 new Mercedes-Benz Sprinters have been bought to be converted into protected personnel carriers for police forces across the country.
Specialist vehicle converter MacNeillie, based in Walsall, will take apart and rebuild the long-bodied, high-roof Sprinters to create secure and durable public-order vehicles.
Mercedes-Benz Vans managing director Steve Bridge and West Midlands Police and Crime Commissioner David Jamieson visited the firm for the culmination of the project involving more than 30 police forces and agencies, which have bought the vans for an unspecified figure. West Midlands Police has bought 64 of them under a national framework agreement that it is running and, it is claimed, will provide savings of more than £800,000 for the wider purchasing group.
Bridge said: ‘The Sprinter is already well established as the front-line public-order van of choice for many UK police forces. Like all Mercedes-Benz vans, it offers a winning combination of reliability and durability, performance, payload and safety, as well as highly competitive operating costs.
‘We are delighted now to have had the opportunity to work with the West Midlands Police and Crime Commissioner, and with our long-term partner MacNeillie, on the development of the state-of-the-art public-order van, which is the subject of this new, national framework agreement.’
Jamieson said: ‘Not only is this great value for money, because police forces and agencies from across the country have come together to drive down costs, but this contract is also good for the West Midlands economy, as all of the vehicles will be converted in the region. The new Mercedes-Benz vehicles are an excellent addition to our fleet that will serve the force well over the coming years.’
Richard Semmens, managing director of MacNeillie, which is part of Babcock International Group, said: ‘We’re delighted to have been chosen to support this initiative alongside Mercedes-Benz, working in partnership with the commissioner and one of the country’s leading police forces. We look forward to producing a finished vehicle that will serve our police forces and the public well.’
Pictured at top from left are MacNeillie engineer Adrian Davis, West Midlands Police and Crime Commissioner David Jamieson, MacNeillie managing director Richard Semmens, Mercedez-Bens Vans UK managing director Steve Bridge and MacNeillie engineer Richard Stockholm
On SuperUnleaded.com: Nissan GT-R Driver Loses Control On Mountain Road