Car 1 - 1941 Chevrolet Master Deluxe Coupe
Car 1 represents an important shift the OPP made in the early 1940s - to patrolling the province's highways with cars rather than motorcycles as the increase in traffic volume became a greater safety hazard.
A faithful reconstruction of one of the very first marked patrol cars used by the OPP, the original Car 1 was one of five specially built Chevrolets, each one assigned to a patrol sergeant, bearing the lettering "Ontario Provincial Police Highway Patrol". The paint scheme for these first five vehicles, a white body with black fenders and quarter panels, was distinct from the other 45 patrol cars (with white bodies and black hoods) purchased in 1941. The tradition of the "black and whites" was born.
Commissioner Eric Silk proposed the idea of restoring an original marked patrol car for use in parades and for public displays in 1971. A suitable vehicle was located in Illinois, and for more than two decades, Car 1 led parades, transported dignitaries and fascinated thousands of car enthusiasts. In 1995, two OPP officers dressed in reproduction uniforms made history when they placed 18th out of 130 positions in the Great American Car Race from Ottawa to Mexico City.
The interior trim was completely redone using original upholstery fabric from a textile mill located in Almonte, Ontario. All chrome parts were carefully removed and re-plated. As well, emergency equipment including a fire extinguisher, a spotlight mounted on the driver's door and a "POLICE STOP" roof lamp were also fitted. Interestingly, OPP patrol vehicles did not initially have sirens, although an exhaust whistle could be used as an emergency warning device.
Now officially "retired" at GHQ, Car 1 is a tangible reminder of the OPP's proud policing tradition.
- 6 Cylinder
- 216.5 Cubic Inches
- 90 Horsepower
- 6.5 to 1 Compression Ratio