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Steane Klose | Feb 7, 2008

Sydney’s Leichhardt Police have taken delivery a new Fiat Punto, which will be used to prowl the streets of one of Australia’s largest Italian communities. The cutesy Punto will not see much in the way of serious police work, instead it will be utilized in a community policing role.

“Despite being marked up as a police vehicle, we don’t use the Fiat for normal police work. Used for community policing, it’s a great way of building rapport between young people and police and certainly helps us get our safe driving messages through to car enthusiasts,” said Superintendent Wayne Cox, Leichhardt Local Area Commander.

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The provision of a Fiat Punto for the Leichhardt Local Area Command is the latest in a series of cars provided by Fiat and Alfa Romeo in Australia to police forces to help fight crime and save lives.

Aside from being a great marketing tool for Fiat, there is a secondary benefit available to the police. The use of unlikely cars such as the Punto (or even a Lotus Exige) helps to bridge the gap between law enforcement and the general public - they are less threatening than the average highway patrol car and invite comment and conversation, providing the Police with an opportunity to discuss local law-enforcement issues or even the likes of road safety.

"A Fiat driving down Norton St is not so unusual, however; a marked up Fiat police vehicle does tend to turn heads! Our stylish new recruit is bound to catch the attention of passers by even more than a normal police vehicle, and it provides a talking point from which we can discuss road safety and break down any barriers that may exist.”

Fiat police vehicles are a dime-a-dozen on the roads of Italy but the little Punto will be sure to provide a bit of fun and colour in the Leichhardt local area.

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