Winter Is Always Coming At Ford’s New Weather Factory In Cologne

At Ford’s new state of the art Environmental Test Center in Cologne, Germany, engineers can test upcoming models in some of the world’s most demanding weather conditions, whenever they want.

For example, they can simulate altitudes higher than the tallest Alpine peak (Mont Blanc), go from the desert heat of the Sahara to the arctic freeze of Siberia, or the take a stroll through the humid forests of Costa Rica, all in an area the size of a football pitch.

For humidity, Ford vehicles undergo testing in both cold and hot conditions, where the test center’s wind tunnels can take humidity from 10% up to 95%. Engineers will even make it rain heavily in order to see how quickly the windows fog up.

When it comes to extreme heat, the test center can raise the stakes all the way to 55 degrees Celsius (151 Fahrenheit), just 1.7 degrees shy of the highest-ever air temperature recorded. This is done with the help of 28 spotlights with 4,000 watt bulbs.

The exact opposite of this test occurs when Ford engineers take vehicles from 100 meters (328 ft) below sea level all the way up to 5,200 meters (17,000), generating wind speeds of up to 120 km/h (75 mph). Temperature is then dropped to – 40 Celsius, which is the average winter temperature in eastern Siberia.

These conditions are perfect for testing the heating systems, windscreen defrosting or the air intake systems.

  • LWOAP

    Cool

    • Loquacious Borborygmus

      Ha! I see what you did there.

  • Loquacious Borborygmus

    I thought that was frost at first in the pic then realise it was Ford’s new styling direction.

Koenigsegg Jesko Gets Pushed Out Of Palexpo Complex As It Departs Geneva

The 1,600PS Jesko needed a push to leave the car show, as it didn’t fire up its 5.0-liter V8 engine.

Facelifted Alfa Romeo Stelvio Spied For The First Time Inside And Out

The facelifted Alfa Romeo Stelvio has undergone some minor interior changes.

600HP Mosquito Supercar Wants To Become Czech Republic’s Brabham BT62

Just like the Brabham BT62, the Mosquito “street-legal race car” will have a seven-figure price.

New York City Says Its Saved A Ton Of Money With Its Electric Vehicle Fleet

The Big Apple is enjoying massive savings thanks to the limited maintenance and charging costs incurred by EVs.

Ford Took A Cheeky Stab At Tesla Model Y With Electric Mustang SUV Tweet, But Did Anyone Notice?

Ford will unveil its Mustang-inspired electric crossover later this year.

Tesla’s S3XY Family Is Complete But Are They Actually Sexy?

Deliveries of the Tesla Model Y will start next year with prices topping $70,000.

Part Batmobile, Part Off-Road Monster: Meet The Desert Storm Trophy Truck

It’s just a study, so it can be as bold, brash and brutal as its designers want it to. Plus it’d look nice in the Batcave.

These Are Some Of The World’s Most Popular Cars On Instagram

Perhaps all the Ford Mustang crashes make it so popular on Instagram….

Tesla Workers Lost Three Times More Days Off The Job Due To Injuries In 2018

The good news, as Tesla’s VP for environmental health and safety pointed out, is that no one died.

An Aston, A Bentley And A BMW Walk Into Azerbaijan… With The Grand Tour

The Grand Tour trio take a 1,000 km trip – and then engage in a race in Baku’s streets.