Patrick James is someone who enjoys collecting things from the Royal Canadian Mounted Police such as buttons, badges, tunics, and any other weird stuff he can easily obtain. Recently, he bought the greatest addition to his Royal Canadian Mounted Police collection, a retired 1980 Plymouth Gran Fury highway patrol car.
For a few decades, the Mopar cars were used by a number of police officers to chase down the bad guys in highway pursuits. Around the mid-1970s, the police patrol cars were not exempted from the strict emission laws and received a heavy blow in both performance and size. Between the “Big Three” car companies, Chrysler was the last one to downsize their cars. In the late 1970s, the “R” body cars were redesigned and left Plymouth behind. This created conflict between dealers who supplied the police cars. In 1980, Plymouth released the Gran Fury “R” body.
The largest engine option available for the Gran Fury was the 360 ci V8 engine. Although it did not have the performance of the legendary Mopars in the early 70s, it was a very reliable engine that was perfect for patrol work. It did have a bit of a problem, the Lean Burn electronic spark control system was prone to failure.
The Canadian police force loved the Plymouth Gran Fury and was used by almost every patrols including the Royal Canadian Mounted Police. James’ 1980 Plymouth Gran Fury was only used by the RCMP for a short time after sustaining damaged during a collision. It retired as a patrol car with only 8,000 miles on its odometer. It was sold at an auction and found its way in Edmonton, Alberta, where it was stored for several years. In 1997, an RCMP member found the car and saw that the body was in great condition but it needed a bit of work to make it running again. Baker did not buy the car but passed on the word. A police car collector purchased it and had it repaired. The engine was rebuilt and it needed a new transmission, driveshaft, exhaust system, and oil pan.
When the Gran Fury was up and running, Baker bought it and restored the interior. The original seat upholstery was replaced. The Gran Fury was then repainted and restored to its original patrol car look. It features police lights, radio, siren, traffic cones, and even a spike belt. Baker acquired the police parts through some friends at the police force. Patrol cars that are in service features a red/blue light on the roof but this one comes with the red/blue lights embedded in the grille and the rear shelf. Baker owned this Gran Fury until 2006.
James always wanted to have highway patrol car which will be a great addition to his RCMP collection. In 2014, James finally saw the chance to make his wish come true. He bought this Gran Fury patrol car and now regularly brings it in local car shows.
This 1980 Plymouth Gran Fury looks good with a little more than 13,000 miles on its odometer. This Gran Fury was produced at the Lynch Road Assembly line in Detroit in April 1980. A total of 12,576 Gran Furies were built in 1980, both for police and civilian use. Because of their working condition, it is incredibly rare to find a police car in such condition and this one is a great example of a classic Canadian highway patrol car.
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