Cops Are Car People Too
Hiding In Plain Sight

White paint, a moderate drop, and classic Enkei RPF1s – at first glance this particular Scion FR-S is considerably understated. So much so in fact, that many of you might be wondering why exactly it’s being featured?

But with this car, its simple exterior is its costume, and that costume is meant to distract from what lies within.

Keiron Berndt - Cops Can Be Car People Too - CJ's FRS - Speedhunters-4680

If you see this car on the street and assume it has only wheels and a drop, well, that’s your own folly.

Keiron Berndt - Cops Can Be Car People Too - CJ's FRS - Speedhunters-4750

Admit it, for this car to hit the front page you knew the stock 4U-GSE/FA20 was long gone. My poker face is atrocious, and this is Speedhunters after all.

Keiron Berndt - Cops Can Be Car People Too - CJ's FRS - Speedhunters-4757

Call an LS swap what you will, but CJ Caspersen, who’s got a long history of building a variety of interesting cars (including a Honda J32A-swapped Exocet) states that prior to this car the most fun he’s ever had driving was behind the wheel of an LS-motivated Nissan S14. Therefore, a V8 was in the cards for this Scion from the moment it was purchased.

Keiron Berndt - Cops Can Be Car People Too - CJ's FRS - Speedhunters-4919

CJ’s aluminium 5.3-liter LSX is fitted out with 799 heads, a Delta 228/228 cam and PAC 1218 valve springs. There’s also a ported LS2 intake and FAST injectors in the mix.

Keiron Berndt - Cops Can Be Car People Too - CJ's FRS - Speedhunters--2

CJ tackled the motor swap and all the modifications aside from engine tuning (that was done to an LS2 GTO ECM via HPTuners by Josh Meinert) himself. Basic hand tools, a welder, determination, and a helpful LS swap community got this car done.

Mild Mannered
Keiron Berndt - Cops Can Be Car People Too - CJ's FRS - Speedhunters-4741

Inside his FR-S, CJ has gone to impressive lengths to keep things looking and behaving as stock as possible. Outside of the trio of pillar-mounted gauges everything looks factory, but under the factory accelerator pedal is a GM drive-by-wire unit that interfaces with a matching LS2 drive-by-wire throttle body.

Keiron Berndt - Cops Can Be Car People Too - CJ's FRS - Speedhunters-4746

The factory FR-S shift boot and knob are retained and connected to an F-body T-56 transmission. From there a Monster stage 3 clutch and NW Drivelines driveshaft carry power to the 255-section Hankook Ventus V12 Evo2 tires. In keeping with the subtle look, those tires are mounted to the aforementioned Enkeis in a 18×9.5-inch +38 fitment.

Keiron Berndt - Cops Can Be Car People Too - CJ's FRS - Speedhunters-4941

Out back, the dual 2.5-inch into 3-inch exhaust manages to remain fairly hidden. Most of the time exhaust gasses passes through a Magnaflow muffler, however, one of CJ’s favorite LS features is the V8 roar at full commotion, so he’s installed an electric cut-out. Flip a switch and the bald eagles are permitted to scream at will.

Off Duty
Keiron Berndt - Cops Can Be Car People Too - CJ's FRS - Speedhunters-4887

When it comes to the V8 chorus attracting the unwanted attention of police, CJ doesn’t have to worry much – he’s actually a man in blue himself.  CJ mentions that as much as possible he uses his position to encourage rather than deter automotive enthusiasm. The Fast and the Furious franchise played a big part in him becoming the gear head he is today, and while he hasn’t let a gang of Torettos run free, there are without a doubt a few enthusiasts in his native Seattle that have reaped the benefits of having a guy like CJ on the force.

Keiron Berndt - Cops Can Be Car People Too - CJ's FRS - Speedhunters-4907

As enthusiasts we often forget that many of the uniformed men and women we pass in our day-to-day lives are car people themselves. I’m not sure about you, but I’d love to see more of what police officers drive, here on the site.

Keiron Berndt - Cops Can Be Car People Too - CJ's FRS - Speedhunters-4929

What do you think? Is this an avenue worth exploring? Perhaps the start of an ongoing series? Maybe we could even line up a cruiser or two against some of the cars…

Strictly for scientific purposes, of course.

Dave Thomas
Instagram: stanceiseverythingcom

Photographed by Keiron Berndt
Instagram: @keiron_berndt
Keiron Berndt Photography



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Paul M Skelly Jr.

Sick, I'll never get tired of LS swaps. There are quite a few gearhead officers here in Long Beach too, and it would be nice to see more of them show off their rides!!


I really dont get the hate for the LS engine...triggered Supra fans I guess.


The GM LS.

The pushrod engine so good, it completely destroyed the idea that DOHC is always better.

Jay Soh Tsu Chung

You know what is the best thing about this car? It looks relatively mild.


Yup. I think the exterior is perfect. I love subtle.


On soapbox: I totally appreciate the humanizing of people in uniform. People seem to get so sucked in to negative stigmas fed by the media, and adopt pack mentalities when it comes to those who serve our communities. Anyone who feels they should be treated fair and unbiased, but talks about law enforcement as if "one is all" deserves to get punched so hard in the stomach that their lower intestine bursts. Off soapbox...


only on this blog do people apologize incessantly for LS swaps.

At what point are you guys going to stop pandering to dip shits and start reporting? LS engines are lighter than 2JZ and RB, make a ton more power and power some of the fastest racing cars on the planet.

Stop being little girls. This is getting ridiculous.




I didn't really apologize so much as provide his reasoning for going LS.


He is an american...those motherf**ckers can get a LS for 500$ where you would get a JZ for 2000$. Its common f**king sence. Pick after european LS swaps not americans wtf. Im so triggered.


Whoa man, who hurt you?


cops are class traitors at best, they arbitrarily choose to enforce laws. That's not a political statement, that's their job

garbage Accords get pulled over for tasteless mods, but Lambos with exhaust cutout valves don't

cops willingly create a pool of low-cost, exploitable labor through debt peonage of the criminal justice system, they are the component of the parasite that creates suction

cops are the EGR valves, the laws are the hoses, your life is the vacuum leak


Soooo edgy


Nah, it's edgier to ignore poverty and misery


I'm sure you do alot every day to combat all inequalities in life, like judging people you don't know in your on social media.


That happens to people as well tho. Wont you complain more/look funny after a broke guy that makes noise instead of complaining about the guy that has a shit tone of money and bragging loudly about it?
Think about it. More so that a guy with a tunned BMW E46 would do more damage then a doctor that drives a lambo. Its just natural picking or common sence I guess. I get what you are saying but its just a natural thing.


There are enthusiasts in every profession, it shouldn't be a surprise. We all have our hobbies. But my own experiences with cops are more bad than good, so I've lost all respect I might have had for them. I got so fed up with being obviously followed, or pulled over and not ticketed, for no apparent reason other than that my car LOOKS like I'd be street racing, that I moved to a different city. I have too much of my own dislike for unsafe drivers to let my occasional impatience risk someone else's life in traffic, so a few enthusiasts in the force don't make up for anything when I don't see any change for the better. The idiots that do race around aren't helping anything either, but that doesn't make profiling the rest of us right.

Sure, feature their cars if they have anything feature worthy, but their career doesn't need to be the basis for a story.

Very nice build here, though. Looks like something I'd drive myself.


Fair David, I don't propose every officer with aftermarket wheels get featured but might be interesting to show what officers are driving and how they deal with them legally.

I'd still keep the features about the car more than profession if I were to write them


yeah if he quit his job I'd chat with him about the build, it is pretty tasteful


Even with the job, I'd talk cars with this guy without feeling uncomfortable around him. There's no way he's not understanding that there are both mature and immature car people. It's just the ones I've had experience with that either don't understand the hobby or just choose to generalize us... probably because they see too much of the immature side when it's their job to watch traffic all day every day.


but....arent you doing exactly what you are crying about "them" doing? generalizing them all based on your experience with a few?


Yes. I hate to admit it, and hate that I do it, but I cant help it. There's no way to explain or justify it when my own argument can just as easily be turned against me. Doesn't stop me from getting nervous as hell any time I see a cop while I'm driving.

Александр Трофименков

I would have never guessed that this car is swapped, looks like a mildly modified 86


It's great to see cops as car people too. I mean that is pretty cool. When it comes to meeting people in general, you would have to respect them for them to respect you. Similar with car meets, I mean sure cops shut them down most of the time but if you are nice to them they will join and basically chill out. People should understand the difference between an honest cop and a criminal. There are still good people who serve and protect people in the police department. You shouldn't show hate to a police officer for no reason. And as a car enthusiast, everyone has to follow traffic laws no matter who you are. I have to say this article is pretty inspirational and relevant in today's world.


What power is this configuration giving?


380ish whp


Cool story and cool build. As a UK cop with a JZA80 Supra I have a lot of time for this. My car's a built NA-T, bit of a frankenstein in many ways but I love it...most of my colleagues aren't petrolheads and really don't get the car BUT I will say they're mostly a good bunch and don't vilify car enthusiasts...that's not to say there aren't bad eggs that do, we've all met them.

I preach to my colleagues that not all car enthusiasts are boy racers...hopefully articles like this (and any potentially impending series) can preach to car enthusiasts and speedhunters that not all coppers are out to get them

Keep up the good work Dave


Thanks! Non villification on both sides could go a fair way


You should feature his car on Speedhunters and keep the cops and their cars storyline going


Well done Dave for an interesting topic and well done CJ for showing off his ride and the blue uniform. As a cop in Sydney, Australia, who also loves the car modding scene, I find it difficult to mix my two passions.

Work doesn't mind that my daily drive is a tuned Golf GTI, or that my weekend track car is a modded MX-5 (heaps of cops love their cars). It's the car scene that's put off by my job. So much so, that I never disclose what I do for a living. None of my club mates, social media groups or fellow forum users know I'm police. I just want to be another car-crazy guy who shares that interest with other like-minded guys. If I mention my job, it really changes the tone of the conversation and brings out some distrust or worse, hate (see comments above) from others. Just like politics or religion, I leave my work at home when going to car meets or events.

I know very well that only a tiny percentage of reckless hoons give car enthusiasts a bad reputation. It's exactly the same with cops. 99% of police don't care about modified cars; we're too busy dealing with serious crime and harm.


Good on you for your profession. I have a few buddies that are cops in the USA. I hear their stories. They're stand up guys, and they do a great job doing what they do. After hearing their stories and stressed, I have more patience for the force.
I also have zero problems with cops because I don't break laws or drive like a dimwit. Plus I give them respect if I'm ever dealing with one. It seems like people with cop problems are the ones that bring the attention to themselves.


It's weird how some people automatically hate all police officers. There's bad seeds in every profession/hobby/whatever but I try and give people the benefit of the doubt most of the time.

Might also be because I have friends in every service, paramedic, fire and police.

I concur on leaving politics and religion out of cars. Just makes things generally roll smoother.


I can imagine the conflict of interest that must bother the car-loving cop. His job is to enforce the law, but he can see how many laws are arbitrary or unjust.

I've gotten dozens of traffic tickets in my life, and I've met every cop personality from Andy Griffith to Officer 82nd Airborne. Some are cool. Some are almost apologetic. Some are raging meatheads.

The ones I've met who're into cars are usually the easiest to deal with - half the time, I've gotten the sense they're only giving me a ticket because they can't find a CYA excuse to not to.

The wannabe R. Lee Ermeys, though - I'll just say that you'd be shocked how much attitude you can give a cop if you don't raise your voice, don't lose your cool, don't use profanity or can make it sound reasoned & intelligent.

You're getting a ticket anyway - might as well get in a few shots.


You're calling it hate as if it's this unfortunate situation that you innocently stumbled into. I'm sure Australian law enforcement culture isn't as pathetic as the one in the US, but you're still free to find a real job and earn respect like a regular person.


ACAB, what exactly happened to you to cause such extreme feelings? As much as the average cop annoys me, I still understand that traffic stops are far from the main focus of their job. There's still a lot they do to actually maintain the 'civil servant' moniker.


David, I'm just a commie, cops rarely bother me because I'm not poor and I'm also white

just tired of seeing all those blue line stickers at car meets


Thank you for proving my point.


Washington is a 2 plate state. Tisk tisk.


Living down in Portland where this is strictly enforced, I was instantly jealous and then when,!? lol! Well, good to know our peeps in blue north of us aren't all uptight about the front plate issue! Love this car for the wheels too. Great choices made.

Officer CJ, you see a lowered e28 rolling without a front plate in da 'Couve, please look the other way. K, thanks!


We need cops like that in SoCal


the ones posted up at the snake are somewhat knowledgeable, which is unfortunate for us

they can spot subtle mods, but they don't know their own laws. Overheard threats of state ref tickets for stuff like intercooler piping that's not even regulated by CARB

their job is to chase us off the snake, and they're great at it


So I'm going to ask, unless I missed a word, does the A/C and other creature comforts still work?


I believe A/C was sacrificed to the car gods.


Of course cops are car people, when I was still a young lad (teenager) and first getting in the car scene there was one around that had a fox body mustang with the plate frame hell yes I street race. Got a few friends on the force that have insane cars now (1,000+hp gt-r, gt350r).


Hankook Ventus V12 Evo2 tires

Excellent tyre


When I was in high school, my local track used to have an event once a month called Top the Cops. It was a chance to drag race local police in their pursuit vehicles. It was a great event and built a good bridge between police and the car community. Sadly it was shut down after only a few seasons because local municipalities deemed it too big of a risk for the police vehicles.


That sounds like a wicked program. Bummer they cancelled it. Did a cop stuff a car really bad I wonder?


Just add some red and blue lights and a bull bar. That'd probably be the coolest police car ever. Inconspicuous as well.


Please no. Unmarked cruisers are bad enough when you know which makes and models to look out for.


Damn....forgot about that haha.....


I'll believe that cops can be car people when freeway speed traps, bushwhacking, and all forms of camera-based enforcement cease to exist.


Everyone has parts of their job they don't like. I'm sure car enthusiasts hate all of the above as much as you do.