New 'Lightning McQueen's Racing Academy' show coming to Disney World

June 29, 2018, 12:09 PM · The cars are coming back to Disney's Hollywood Studios.

Even though the Walt Disney World park closed its "Lights, Motors, Action" auto stunt show years ago to make space for the upcoming Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge land, Disney will be bringing another "car"-based attraction to the park, as it announced a new show for Disney's Hollywood Studios.

"Lightning McQueen's Racing Academy" will open at the park early next year, Walt Disney Imagineering's Kathy Mangum announced at a press conference following the dedication of Toy Story Land this morning. Featuring the star of Pixar's Cars franchise, the new show will be located near Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster and also will feature Mater and Cruz Ramirez.

The new experience will add another major animation franchise to the park, which has been undergoing a substantial transformation with the opening of two new lands and other attractions, including as Mickey and Minnie's Runaway Railway.

While Disney reps repeated previously released information about Star Wars Galaxy’s Edge and the Star Wars themed hotel, it did not reveal any new information about those highly anticipated new developments. Galaxy’s Edge opens in late fall 2019 at Walt Disney World and summer of next year at Disneyland in California.

Replies (10)

June 29, 2018 at 12:31 PM

No clue what this is, but what took so long? Cars came out in 2006, and Walt Disney Studios Paris has had a Cars ride since 2007. No reason that ride (or one like it, or DCA’s Cars ride) couldn’t have been cloned and opened years ago, except for the masses who will visit a park regardless of new attractions. It’s sheer laziness on their part.

June 29, 2018 at 12:33 PM

"Featuring the star of Pixar's Cars franchise, the new show will be located near Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster and also will feature Mater and Cruz Ramirez."

Considering this is opening "early next year" that probably means a theater or other venue will not be built for this. The plaza around Rock 'n' Roller Coaster is already an overcrowded mess, so unless they're opening the overflow gate (just past the entrance to RNRC), there's very little space for a real "show", especially one that's likely to involve full sized cars (assuming they're just re purposing the ones that were used for meet and greets past the old TSM entrance at Pixar Place).

I'm guessing this is going to more of a parade through the crowd and photo op, than an actual "show".

June 29, 2018 at 1:08 PM

Not particularly interested in the Cars show (though I am happy to see anything that can divert crowds from Galaxy's Edge even slightly), I am super interested in Runaway Railway.

This looks like a genuine sleeper hit. The description of the ride scenes reveals both a cutting-edge technological attraction (audio animatronics, advanced projector systems, and SPOILER: the cars split apart into separate rooms, come back together in another room, and then dance together like Pooh's Hunny Hut!) and a story that perfectly encapsulates the innocent anarchy of the Mickey Mouse shorts. If you haven't seen them, you should go find on YouTube and watch them immediately; they're phenomenal.

June 29, 2018 at 1:12 PM

The Cars show is going to be held in the Sunset Showcase building near Rock n Roller Coaster. This is the location where they used to do Club Disney. Since this was more a flex space, my guess is this might be something like a fancied up meet and greet or something in the format of the Disney Junior show.

June 29, 2018 at 1:16 PM

We were in Sunset Showcase for the media center this week. Now that this event is done, the space is available. ;-)

June 29, 2018 at 1:33 PM

Will this be similar to California Adventure’s DJ Dance N’ Drive?

June 29, 2018 at 3:18 PM

I can imagine the script of the show.
Lightning and Mater go to DHS because Lightning once performed there in an amazing show. Mater will perform his songs to bring the culture of Radiator springs but it sucks and Lightning will tell him 80's songs are better and they will sing those.

June 29, 2018 at 6:46 PM

Seems like an odd choice. Why not a more current IP, like Wreck it Ralph? I suppose it doesn't really matter, this isn't something I'd waste time to see anyway.

June 29, 2018 at 9:24 PM

Cars is stupidly popular with young boys who might not be ready for Tower of Terror or Rock n' Roller Coaster, and they're gonna need all hands on deck to keep people engaged who won't wait for Galaxy's Edge. Makes sense to me.

June 30, 2018 at 8:11 AM

This will probably be as close as DHS gets to having a Carsland as Disney will allow, most likely keeping it exclusive to DCA. Too bad because Carsland is a beautifully immersive land. Like I said before, I believe The Incredibles would be a great fit for DHS with Marvel off the table in Orlando. And I don't think Brad Bird is done with two Incredibles movies either. More than likely, Brad Bird will come back to his beloved franchise to do a third movie. At that time would be a good time to bring the Incredibles IP to DHS. And an Indiana Jones expansion is a definite possibility too! The future is bright for my once favorite theme park. I hope Disney keeps the momentum going.
As for Toy Story Land, what a beautiful job the imagineers did to nail the immersion of Andy's back yard. The Toy Story movies have a special place in my family's heart. My son and I must have watched Toy Story and Toy Story 2 a couple of hundred times while he was growing up. We were anticipating the opening of this land more than Pandora because of our love for the Toy Story franchise. And every little detail that the imagineers hit will be truly valued!
Overall, the imagineers laid out DHS's Toy Story Land very well featuring Woody's side of the land, a direct tribute to Toy Story 2 with Jesse and Weezy featured on Slinky Dog Dash, and Buzz's side of the land, another tribute to the first Toy Story movie featuring the little green aliens and Pizza Planet references on Alien Swirling Saucers. Not to mention the sci-fi Buzz and little green aliens side of the land will make a nice transition into the back entrance of Star Wars Galaxy's Edge. And like Pandora World of Avatar, there is room for expansion in DHS's Toy Story Land. Another flat ride attraction and the addition of an Al's Toy Barn would be welcomed, and where's Bulls-Eye? We need more Bulls-Eye!
All I can say is GREAT job Disney! Keep it up!

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