2011 Ford Explorer playing in the dirt
Click above to watch the video after the jump

The outgoing Ford Explorer was a rear-drive-based body-on-frame SUV with a substantial thirst for fuel yet little in the way of off-road capability. The 2011 Explorer is built off a front-drive architecture, which would lead the uninformed observer to believe that dirt and rocks won't get along with the newly redesigned CUV. But Ford has worked its magic with a clever all-wheel drive system that works in tandem with a Terrain Management System that promises a modicum of off-road capability. Without skid plates and higher ground clearance, we're not talking hardcore rock crawling, of course, but perhaps there's more ability here than one might otherwise expect out of a unibody three-row crossover.

Of course, it will take time to get this message across to the car-buying public, and the first effort in Ford's educating process comes in the way of this sand-filled video. Ford put its newest 2011 model on display at the "San Diego Vision" media event, taking a bright red Limited model for a spin on very loose dirt. There are no rocks and no obtuse articulations; instead there are a bunch of different angles of the new Explorer doing dirt donuts with earth flying everywhere. It's far from the most impressive off-road video we've seen, but it sure is pretty. Hit the jump to watch the video for yourself. Hat tip to Yaroukh!

Related Gallery2011 Ford Explorer Southern California Live Debut

Photos copyright ©2010 Drew Phillips / AOL

[Source: Ford via YouTube]