California Highway Patrol 1988 Dodge Diplomat

This 1988 Dodge Diplomat served with the North Sacramento office of the California Highway Patrol (CHP) and later as a police academy vehicle before being sold into private ownership in the late 1990s. 1988 was also the last year that the CHP purchased Dodge Diplomats. Dodge Diplomats were purchased by the CHP in 1981, 1983, 1985, 1986, and 1988.

These Diplomats were equipped with the AHB police package which included:

  • 318 V8 with 4bbl carburetor
  • A-904 automatic transmission
  • Stiffer suspension and heavier sway bars
  • 8-1/4″ differential with Sure-Grip and 2.94 gears
  • Larger brakes
  • 125 MPH certified speedometer

Note about the RADAR gun: ​In 1988 the CHP was authorized to use radar to enforce speed on roads in rural and unincorporated areas. During the late 1980’s and early 1990’s the CHP used Kustom Signals X and K band equipment, where used, and had replaced it with Kustom Signals Hawk (modified and unmodified) and Golden Eagle equipment by the mid 1990’s (see below). Notice how their RADAR units have their logo on them. I’m not sure that the RADAR gun laying on the seat of this car would have been the proper equipment used while this car was in service.


This Diplomat was eventually restored back to its in-service condition a lot of effort put in to locating the proper items that would have been in the car at the time. These items include:

  • GE RANGR Radio
  • Regency Scanner
  • Antennas
  • Unity clear and red spotlights
  • Map light
  • Shotgun & mount
  • CHP-issued first aid kit
  • CHP issued fire extinguisher
  • CHP equipment box
  • CHP push bumper with siren speaker
  • CHP markings / decals

It’s definitely a beautiful and well restored car.

These cars definitely had a menacing look to them and I’m sure they made a lot of people pucker when they saw them in their rear-view mirror.


1982-1989 Dodge Diplomat Police Cars

California Highway Patrol

California Highway Patrol – North Sacramento

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I started my career as a police officer in 1989 with the Geneva on The Lake Police Department. I worked part time as a police officer and full time as a Security Sergeant doing armed mobile security patrols for a local security company. In 1990 I became a State Trooper with the Ohio State Highway Patrol. During my career as a State Trooper I was certified as a Technical Crash Investigator, OPOTA Police Instructor, OPOTA Police Driving Instructor, LASER Instructor, and received awards for ACE (Auto Larceny) and Post Trooper of The Year. Code 3 Garage is a mix of my inner automotive gearhead, and public safety background. I hope you enjoy it!