‘Cars’ update on two coasts: Radiator Springs Racers virtual ride-through for Disneyland and full-size Ramone for Disney World hotel

in Disney, Entertainment, Theme Parks

Later this year, two large Disney areas will debut, dedicated to the hugely popular “Cars” franchise. One will be a highly-themed land with new attractions and the other an immersive hotel environment. And today we offer a further look at a few details of both, courtesy of two recent new videos.

First, at the Disneyland Resort in Anaheim, Calif., Cars Land has been under construction for several years, the pinnacle of a $1+ billion improvement project to the Disney California Adventure theme park. The highlight of the huge new area that will include rides, shopping, dining, and plenty of scenery, will be Radiator Springs Racers, an E-ticket attraction that will use similar technology as the Test Track ride at Walt Disney World’s Epcot theme park in Florida, but featuring familiar characters from the Disney/Pixar “Cars” universe.

A pre-visualization ride-through of the entire Radiator Springs Racers ride recently surfaced on YouTube. Similar videos have been shown off by Disney before, but never as complete as this one. In the video, the virtual ride-through is being presented to an unknown audience by Imagineer Kevin Rafferty, one of the leads on the Cars Land project. The virtual ride is dated Oct. 13, 2011, so it’s a few months old at this point. The dialogue and other audio tracks heard in this “pre-vis” are likely not finalized for the ride that will debut with Cars Land (they’re dated 2009), but it does give a good overall idea of what the attraction will be like.

Video: Radiator Springs Racers pre-visualization full ride-through

UPDATE (1/5/12): The video has been taken down from YouTube. It wasn’t forcibly taken down by Disney, but by the user who uploaded it. That person may or may not have been asked to remove it by Disney. Either way, it seems it shouldn’t have been there in the first place, as it’s gone now.

Most interesting is that according to the realtime numbers on the screen during the presentation, Radiator Springs Racers will reach a top speed of around 35 mph, surprisngly slower than the 60+ mph that Test Track hits at Epcot. It also puts the ride duration at around 4 minutes and 30 seconds. But these numbers may not be accurate for the finished version of the ride, which will open this summer.

Jumping coasts to Walt Disney World in Orlando, Fla., Disney’s Art of Animation Resort is currently under construction, with its first phase scheduled to open in May. But it won’t be until July that the Cars wing of the hotel opens. Even so, Disney is already working on the details that will fill the Cars courtyard, similar to the environment being created for Cars Land in California.

Today the Disney Parks Blog offered a video look at car designer Chip Foose helping out the team from Walt Disney Imagineering in adding flames to the full-size version of Ramone, one of the “Cars” characters that will be on display at the hotel. Also worth noting in the video is the appearance of Mater’s front bumper and teeth, hanging behind Imagineers for a few seconds at the 1:06 mark in the video below.

Video: Ramone Is Prepped for Disney’s Art of Animation Resort

Fans of Disney/Pixar’s “Cars” clearly have much to look forward to throughout 2012, with both Cars Land in California and the Cars wing of Disney’s Art of Animation Resort opening this summer, and many more details are sure to surface between now and their debut dates.

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