The 1940's began and ended with "white tops" but inbetween . . .
was another story. By 1942 the POLICE roof lights started to disappear.
Due to World War II production of new passenger automobiles was suspended.
When the Department was able to purchase new cars after the war they returned to the original green and black scheme without roof lights.
Some possible explanations are that the cars were ordered during the war as "blackout cars"
or that materials to equip the cars as the Department wanted were still in short supply after the war
or simply that new vehicles were needed to be put out on patrol as soon as possible so the extra paintwork and equipment was temporarily omitted.
But by the end of the decade the "white tops" and POLICE lights had returned.
1940 Plymouth radio cars ready for delivery
1941 Plymouth radio car - 18th Precinct
1941 Plymouth - 1942 Chevrolet sans roof light with 1941 Plymouth in background
1942 Hudson RMP center photos are from the 1947 movie "the Naked City", the RMP was apparently real, filmed in front of the 7th Precinct on Clinton Street
1942 Nash RMP
during the years of WWII the Department apparently used
any make of vehicle that they could get
Note the insert photo of the trunk of a 1942 Nash RMP,
the markings on the wrecked car are barely visible
1946 Ford RMP - back to green and black and no POLICE roof light
1946-48 Plymouth "business coupe" RMP photo courtesy of Chris McSweeney, NYPD
1946-48 Plymouth RMP - 2 door sedan
1948 Plymouth RMP - return of the "white top" and POLICE roof light
1949 Ford RMPs being delivered by the Ford Motor Company . . .
. . . Ford referred to the green and white cars as a "new look" for the "Finest"