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Filed under: Crossover, Ford, First Drive, Middle East, Off-Road

2011 Ford Explorer testing in Middle East - Click above for high-res image gallery

With California's Death Valley conveniently located on the same continent as Dearborn, Michigan, why on earth would Ford ship engineers and the all-new 2011 Explorer all the way to the United Arab Emirates to conduct hot-weather and off-road testing? Especially on a crossover, a vehicle few people will ever drive off-road?

The value of this 14,000-mile round trip became abundantly clear as I stepped out of the civilized, air-conditioned comfort of my shuttle vehicle, an F-150 SVT Raptor.

The air in Dubai hits you like an atomic hair dryer. Unlike the heat in Death Valley, there's some serious humidity hanging in the atmosphere due to the UAE's proximity to the Gulf of Oman. Our day in the desert saw temperatures of 48° Celsius (118° Fahrenheit) with humidity in the range of 40-60 percent. That's not a dry heat. Using a standard heat index calculator with a 50-percent humidity factor, the equivalent temperature showed 191° Fahrenheit.


Gallery: 2011 Ford Explorer: First Ride



Photos copyright (C)2010 Rex Roy / AOLContinue reading First Ride: Autoblog gets hot in Dubai with 2011 Ford Explorer

First Ride: Autoblog gets hot in Dubai with 2011 Ford Explorer originally appeared on Autoblog on Mon, 16 Aug 2010 11:58:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.



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