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Review: Escort Shifter ZR4
Article written by radardetectorforum.org member CJR238
LIDAR, sometimes referred to as Laser, is a tool used by many Police Departments across the country. Some manufacturers of radar Detectors and some
independent jammer company’s have made devices to combat this technology that renders our normal windshield mount radar detectors useless. For more information on LIDAR, click here.
Escort makes just the item to combat this threat, the Escort “ZR4 Shifters.” The system includes (2) front-mounted and (1) rear license plate mounted laser transceivers, interface module, display controller with audible and visual alerts, and a remote mute button.
Laser receivers/”Shifters:” The ZR4 shifters have multiple sensors, (both front and rear) to detect and can briefly shift laser to give you an extra few seconds to slow down. Results/performance may very so its important to know what type of laser is used in your area and what type of car you will be installing them on. Smaller vehicles seem to do well with the ZR4’s capability’s, where larger vehicles are more difficult to protect and may require a higher power option.
Over all i have been happy with the ZR4’s performance on my car, and have had quite a few saves from them as well. Where most windshield mount radar detectors will completely miss laser shots its nice having the confidence you will be alerted to the next laser encounter by adding the ZR4’s to your setup.
Video of Escort ZR4 Shifters in action
Escort ZR4 Shifter encounter
Escort ZR4 Shifter test against the TruSpeed lidar gun
The Escort ZR4 shifter pack also have the ability to “link” to other Escort radar detectors (Passport iQ, Passport 9500ix, Passport 9500i Blue, Passport 9500i Red, Passport 8500 X50 Blue, Passport 8500 X50 Red, Passport 8500, Cordless Solo S2, Cordless Solo S3, Passport SR7, C65 and RedLine), This combination of detection and “shifting” is a great combo for any Escort radar detector. The ZR4 shifters will also activate shifting when you radar detector picks up a laser alert when “linked”. (simply plug your Escort brand radar detector into the ZR4 CPU and now you can control the ZR4’s with your radar detector).
Installation on the ZR4’s is not overly difficult if you have some car install experience, but i always suggest having an authorized Escort installation shop do the work. Some key points to keep in mind if you, or if your having someone else install the ZR4 shifters:
The most important functional aspects that must be adhered to is to keep the front shifters square and level with your vehicle and with absolutely no obstructions blocking them. Square means that they are pointing straight ahead, not off to the right or left. Do not have the shifters flow with your car’s angles, they must be aimed straight ahead. Level means that they are not pointing up or down.
The ZR4 shifters must have completely unobstructed view of the road, otherwise feedback issues and the ability to see and alert to LIDAR will be diminished dramatically if not completely. This is why the shifters should never be mounted behind any type of grille no matter how thin and widely spaced the grille pattern is. Also be sure the front shifter heads are not recessed but instead are mounted just “ahead” of the surround grille pattern. Ideally the front shifter heads should stick out by 1/8″ to 1/4″ relative to any nearby surface. If you absolutely have to have the front of the shifter heads recessed expect a possible loss in sensitivity/shifting.
If at all possible, center each SHIFTER module between the license plate, and the outside edge of the vehicle not too low or to high for ideal placement. (See photo below at left.)
It’s important to note that Escort released a new model called the Escort Laser ShifterPro that replaces the Shifter ZR4. The release occurred in December 2013.
For more information about the Escort Shifter ZR4 please visit our forum section (below) and the official Escort Site for this product: