Militarized Cybertruck cop cars are coming

Militarized Cybertrucks driven by cops and private security forces may soon cruise US streets—a scenario repeatedly endorsed by Tesla CEO Elon Musk himself. And while fans of the chunky, soap-phobic, recall-prone EV previously teased similar projects, at least one California-based Tesla alterations company is officially advertising Cybertruck “upfitting” packages to police and other “tactical response” customers.

But judging from recent rumblings on one of the most popular Cybertruck forums, fleets of law enforcing “Bladerunners” may be on the horizon. In a May 30 post to Cybertruck Owners Club, user and website sponsor “UP_Frank” uploaded a brief video clip depicting a modded, matte gray version of the vehicle with blue-and-red flashing LED light bars on its roof and sides.

“Now this is cool. Imagine getting pulled over by this? Not sure if I would be worried or fangirling,” they wrote above the video, citing a company called Unplugged Performance and its subsidiary, UP.FIT, as responsible for the alterations.

‘The finest in apocalypse technology’

The Cybertruck has embodied sci-fi dystopian living since its reveal almost five years ago. Musk once described the sharp-edged, stainless steel EV as “an armored personnel carrier from the future— what Bladerunner [sic] would have driven” and even half-joked during its (much delayed) rollout event that the Cybertruck represents the “finest in apocalypse technology.” Although the $60,990 base model isn’t equipped for off-the-lot police work, Musk openly backs cops on patrol in Cybertrucks—a possibility also hinted at last year by close friend and Oracle co-founder, Larry Ellison.

But one company appears to have beaten Oracle to the punch. Based in Hawthorne, California, Unplugged Performance has sold various Tesla model modification packages since 2013. In April, however, the company entered a new market—municipal police partnerships, beginning with an Anaheim PD pilot program partnership to supply local law enforcement with multiple upgraded Tesla Model Y cop cars. UP.FIT, meanwhile, appears to be a new venture within Unplugged’s larger organization explicitly advertised as “accelerating deployment of the next generation police and fleet vehicles” meant for “American Hero’s [sic].”

UP.FIT service packages are currently categorized for “Patrol,” “Admin,” or “Tactical & Speciality” depending on a customer’s needs. Patrol tier vehicles are billed as “the best black & white available” and allegedly were “developed and engineered from the ground up, with feedback from hundreds of agencies.” Admin options are intended for law enforcement transport and investigations, while Tactical & Speciality are directly marketed for K-9 units, watch commanders, and “SWAT or military use.” Cybertruck packages include upgrades such as front compartment rifle and shotgun mounts, “pursuit rated tires,” and siren systems.

Your tax dollars at work

With the all-wheel drive Cybertruck’s current $79,990 price, it stands to reason the combined taxpayer cost for a vehicle and new UP.FIT features could easily top $90,000. While UP.FIT’s website doesn’t offer any price ranges, Unplugged Performance lists similar products on its online store. A 50-inch, 48V double row LED light bar for the Cybertruck, for example, costs $1,293.75, while a front bull bar retails for $1,995. UP.FIT details at least 25 upgrades in its standard “Patrol Cybertruck” tier as well as multiple recommended and optional additions. For comparison, a brand-new 2024 Ford Explorer 4WD Police Interceptor costs roughly $47,000.

“While I can’t get into great detail at the moment… I’m able to say that we are indeed working with police departments as it relates to Cybertruck Police vehicles,” Unplugged Performance president Ben Schaffer told Popular Science in an email. Schaffer also confirmed the companies are bringing demonstrator police Model Y’s and Cybertrucks to industry events this year “to provide first hand experiences for law enforcement.”

It’s an experience cops already appear excited to try. In January, the official X account for the police department of Rosenberg, Texas, posted
two photos
of a Cybertruck parked in a shopping complex lot near a cop car. “Spotted out in the wild. What do you think @elonmusk… will the #Cybertruck make a good police vehicle?” the Rosenberg PD account wrote. Less than two hours later, Elon Musk replied using only the “100-percent” emoji.

“We have a lot of news coming as it relates to our UP.FIT Cybertruck programs (the plural is intentional),” Schaffer promises.

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