Within the U.S. Border Patrol, we use an array of service vehicles. For the most part we use Ford F-250's and Chevy Tahoe's. I have spoken with many other Patrol Agents and also station mechanics. We are all of the same opinion that it just does not make practical sense to keep on using such a large number of F-250's. The SUV's, whether it be a Chevy Tahoe or a Ford Explorer, get better gas mileage, are far superior in off-road conditions, and are better for vehicle pursuits. The following figures are from fueleconomy.gov and are for 4WD gas engine vehicles traveling an annual distance of 15,000 miles. A 2011 Chevy Tahoe gets a combined 17 mpg with an annual fuel cost of $3263. A 2011 Ford Explorer gets 19 mpg with an annual fuel cost of $2919. A 2011 Chevy Silverado gets 14 mpg with an annual fuel cost of $3963. A 2011 Ford F-150 gets 16 mpg with an annual fuel cost of $3469. If we move to a larger SUV fleet and reduce the number of trucks we will save between $550 - $700 in annual fuel costs per vehicle. In just the U.S. Border Patrol we have approximately 20,000 agents. Using that same number for a fleet, that's an annual fuel savings between eleven million to fourteen million dollars. The benefits for this kind of a switch are numerous and cannot be ignored. As a responsible government that wants to truly practice what it preaches in regards to fiscal responsibility and environmental impact reduction, this is a change that must be taken into consideration.
Idea No. 14237