Route 66 News

A Route 66 guide to the “Cars” movie

Updated Nov. 9, 2011

If you just saw the “Cars” movie and want to find more information about Route 66, welcome.

First, the Radiator Springs shown in “Cars” is a fictional town. Historic Route 66 exists. On the real Route 66, there is a Baxter Springs in Kansas and a Peach Springs in Arizona. But Radiator Springs does not exist, except in the imaginations of Pixar’s artists and writers. However, many of the characters and places shown are based on real characters and locations on Route 66, the Mother Road.

Let’s introduce them, shall we?

Sally the PorscheDawn Welch

For instance, Sally the Porsche, portrayed in the film by Bonnie Hunt, is based primarily on Dawn Welch, owner of the historic Rock Cafe in Stroud, Okla. Welch’s restaurant is one of the road’s most acclaimed, as Michael and Jane Stern of Roadfood.com will attest. If you plan to visit the Rock Cafe for a meal, it is advised that you be there during off-peak hours. The restaurant tends to get very crowded during the lunch and dinner rush on weekends.

The Sheriff of Radiator Spring

Michael Wallis

The Sheriff is portrayed by the distinctive baritone voice of Michael Wallis, who also served as a Route 66 consultant for the film. Wallis has written 14 books, including the bestselling “Route 66: The Mother Road”, which catapulted him to national prominence in 1990. Wallis also guided the Pixar crew on two Route 66 tours for its research for “Cars,” and he and his wife, Suzanne, wrote “The Art of Cars,” a behind-the-scenes look at the film. They reside in Tulsa.

Fillmore

Bob Waldmire Waldmire's VW minibus

Fillmore, the VW microbus voiced by George Carlin in the film, was unofficially inspired by Route 66 artist Bob Waldmire. I say “unofficially” because Waldmire refused to lend his name for the film. He’s a strict vegetarian, and he was bothered by “Cars” toys with his name on them would be in McDonald’s Happy Meals. Waldmire lives a hippie lifestyle, driving up and down Route 66 in his own VW microbus (complete with a solar panel for supplemental power), and selling his intricate artwork. Waldmire died of cancer on Dec. 16, 2009. His microbus is currently displayed at the Illinois Route 66 Hall of Fame and Museum in Pontiac.

By the way, Fillmore’s geodesic dome home in the film looks a lot like the dome at Meteor City in Arizona. Waldmire has a connection to Meteor City; he painted the massive mural of Route 66 there.

Mater

Harley Russell

Tow Mater the tow truck, voiced by Larry the Cable Guy in the film, is a composite of NASCAR superfan and non-Route 66er Douglas “Mater” Keever of North Carolina, Dean Walker (lower left), a mover and shaker at the Kansas Historic Route 66 Association; and Harley Russell, co-owner of the Sandhills Curiousity Shop in Erick, Okla. Walker can turn his feet backwards and frequently can be found at the Baxter Springs Heritage Center and Museum in Baxter Springs, Kan. Russell, who for many years was a professional musician, and his wife, Annabelle, performed music and offbeat comedy as the Mediocre Music Makers at their shop in Erick, which he describes as the “Redneck Capital of the World.” Harley and Annabelle have taken time off because of her recent bout with cancer, but they plan to eventually resume their tourism music gig. Harley Russell’s speaking voice, by the way, sounds very much like Mater’s.

U-Drop Inn

Ramone’s body-art shop in the film is directly inspired by the U-Drop Inn, a recently restored Art Deco gasoline station and restaurant complex in Shamrock, Texas. The U-Drop Inn now serves as a tourism and chamber of commerce office.

Cozy Cone Motel

Blue Swallow Motel

Wigwam Motel, Holbrook, Ariz.

Sally’s Cozy Cone Motel in the film is a composite of the historic Blue Swallow Motel in Tucumcari, N.M., and the teepee-shaped Wigwam Motels, with one in Holbrook, Ariz., and the other in San Bernardino, Calif. All of these motels are restored, well-maintained, and worth seeking out for a night’s sleep. Also, the name of Cozy Cone Motel is probably a nod to the Cozy Dog Drive-In restaurant on Route 66 in Springfield, Ill.

Tucumcari Mountain

The mountain shaped like a radiator cap that overlooks Radiator Springs is inspired by Tucumcari Mountain in Tucumcari. The mountain is the dominant feature in that region for miles around. Local high-school students repaint the town’s initial on the side of the mountain each year. (The lower image, by the way, is from an old postcard.)

Cadillac Range

Black Mountains

Cadillac Ranch

The Cadillac Range of mountains that surrounds Radiator Springs is derived from the rugged Black Mountains of western Arizona and the famous Cadillac Ranch sculpture in Amarillo, Texas.

Hackberry General Store

SandHills Curiousity Shop

Lizzie’s Curio Shop in Radiator Springs resembles the crazy Route 66 jumble of memorabilia and knickknacks at Hackberry General Store in Hackberry, Ariz., and the Sandhills Curiousity Shop, aka the City Meat Market building, in Erick, Okla. I suspect other stores are included in the mix, including several in Oatman, Ariz. Lizzie seems patterned after Dot Leavitt of Dot’s Mini-Museum (not pictured) of Vega, Texas, although there may be a bit of Lucille Hamons, the late owner of the now-closed Lucille’s gas station of Hydro, Okla., (not pictured) mixed in as well.

The “Here It Is!” sign near Lizzie’s shop is directly inspired by the historic “Here It Is!” billboard near the Jackrabbit Trading Post in Jackrabbit, Ariz.

Leaning Tower of Tires Leaning Tower of Niles, Ill.Groom's leaning water tower

The Casa Della tire shop’s Leaning Tower of Tires is obviously inspired by the Leaning Tower of Pisa in Italy or the half-scale replica in Niles, Ill. — take your pick. But there also is a leaning water tower near Groom, Texas, that probably sparked imaginations in Pixar.

Flo's Cafe canopies

Canopy in Needles, Calif.
Flo’s V-8 Diner in Radiator Springs basically resembles an air filter found in many cars. However, the canopies at Flo’s resemble the this old canopy at a gas station on Route 66 in Needles, Calif. There are others sprinkled across the country, but are rapidly disappearing.

Flo

Fran Houser of the Midpoint Cafe

I suspect Flo herself was partly inspired by Fran Houser, owner of the Midpoint Cafe in Adrian, Texas, who’s well-known for her food and hospitality. But there are plenty of small, friendly restaurants along Route 66 that could have provided ideas to Pixar.

Sally and Lighting's drive

When Sally and Lightning McQueen drive into the country along old Route 66, the forest road resembles the highways winding through the Kaibab National Forest west of Flagstaff, Ariz., and the twisting, turning road that leads to Oatman, Ariz.

Lightning's waterfall

Havasu Falls

When McQueen drives through a tunnel that resembles the tunnels on the Arroyo Seco Parkway in Los Angeles County (not pictured), he encounters a gorgeous waterfall on the other side. This appears to be inspired by Havasu Falls, which is not on Route 66 but is near the Grand Canyon, a destination for Route 66 travelers.

Sally's bridge

Cyrus Avery Bridge

Colorado Boulevard Bridge

Canyon Diablo bridge

The bridge that McQueen sees Sally driving on resembles several bridges on Route 66, including the Cyrus Avery Route 66 Memorial Bridge in Tulsa (second photo), the Colorado Street Bridge in Pasadena, Calif. (third photo; postcard image), and the now-closed bridge over Diablo Canyon at Two Guns, Ariz.

Route 66 vista

View from La Bajada Hill

One of the wide desert vistas of Route 66 seen in the film resembles the view from La Bajada Hill, a very old alignment of the Mother Road about halfway between Santa Fe and Albuquerque. Don’t try to drive up La Bajada Hill, though. It’s narrow, severely eroded, and boasts about two dozen switchbacks that provided a challenge to drivers even during its heyday. It’s best to drive to the base of the hill and hike up the remnants of the old gravel highway instead.

Oatman burros

The tractors seen wandering through town and invading a store in Radiator Springs are a likely homage to the wild burros that roam Oatman, Ariz. The animals are descendants of the burros once used in the gold mines there. The burros are a tourist attraction unto themselves, although the locals get irritated when the animals barge into stores and hassle tourists.

Glenrio's Little Juarez

One of the closed businesses seen in Radiator Springs bears the name “Glenrio.” This refers to the ghost town of Glenrio, which is on old Route 66 at the Texas-New Mexico border off Exit 0 on Interstate 40. One of the Radiator Springs businesses is nearly identical to the long-closed Little Juarez restaurant in Glenrio (above).

Wagon Wheel Motel

When Lightning and Sally visit the ruins of the Wheel Well Motel, it reminded me of a composite of the wonderfully restored Wagon Wheel Motel (above) in Cuba, Mo., the now-extinct Wishing Well Motel in Countryside, Ill., and the rock overlook at the old Chief Yellowhorse Trading Post at the Arizona-New Mexico border.

There’s also a short glimpse in the film of a neon “EAT” sign. There’s a similar sign at the site of a long-defunct restaurant near Cajon Pass in Southern California. Clanton’s Cafe in Vinita, Okla., also has one.

Among the deserted businesses in Radiator Springs, you see a shuttered “Budville” building. This is in reference to the Budville Trading Post, west of Albuquerque on old 66.

If you decide to travel Route 66, it is recommended that you pick up a Route 66 Dining & Lodging Guide from the National Historic Route 66 Federation. There are several excellent guidebooks to help you find your way, including “Route 66: EZ Guide for Travelers,” Bob Moore and Rich Cunningham’s “Complete Guidebook and Atlas to Route 66″ and the “Here It Is!” map series of every state the Mother Road traverses. Scott Piotrowski wrote an excellent Route 66 guidebook to the Los Angeles area, and David Clark recently published a guidebook to the Mother Road in Chicago. And if you are traveling with children, you can download a free guidebook to kid-friendly attractions on the Mother Road here.

If you are able to drive to only one Route 66 city that best resembles Radiator Springs, I recommend Tucumcari, N.M. It’s a small town that boasts a bunch of vintage motels, a Mexican restaurant shaped like a sombrero, lots of neon lights, a Route 66-themed grocery store, Tucumcari Mountain and the well-preserved Odeon Theatre, which still shows first-run movies.

If you seek to visit a city on Route 66 that’s bigger, Albuquerque has done the best job of the major metropolitan areas in keeping its Mother Road flavor, especially with its abundance of neon lights along Central Avenue.

So get out there and discover the Mother Road for yourselves. As Wallis would say, “Life begins at the off-ramp. Travel well.”

(Route 66 News would like to gratefully acknowledge the photo contributions of Emily Priddy, Guy Randall, The Lope blog, HavasuFalls.net and RoadTripMemories.com with this project. Image excerpts from “Cars” came from computer screenshots of the trailers, downloads from the film’s Web site, and from a complementary movie poster.)

505 thoughts on “A Route 66 guide to the “Cars” movie

  1. Thomas Huxley

    I agree with John! GREAT JOB!!! That really helps everyone, Animation/Pixar fans, Cars fans and Route 66 fans and even everyone else understand how Route 66 and Cars tie together and where a lot of the bits in Cars comes from.
    A lot of effort certainly went into this film to be in what is in my opinion, the best Pixar film to date.

  2. Audrey

    Amazing! This will keep me happy for hours! I love all the links – especially Emily’s. My family of 8 will be hitting the “road” July 7 and this will really get me stoked!
    Thanks for all your hard work!
    Aud

  3. G.H.

    Thanks, and great timing! I’ve photographed most of those places but didn’t know what the ex-cafe in Glenrio had been called.

  4. Dave "66 Willy" Willman

    Ron,

    Great job on this project and this blog! Your passion must exceed
    your time to do all of this ten fold. Where do you find the time?
    I am passing this on to the Colorado folks here. It is outstanding.

    Thanks again for the work you do,

    66 Willy

  5. Timothy Miller

    Thanks Ron for the interesting and entertaining references that connect movie magic to the real life people and places. We’ll make a note about your blog in our next issue of Texas Driver Magazine and pass the word along to our readers.

  6. James Michalek

    I was already anxious to see “Cars”, now I’m practically chomping at the bit.

    While we were dating, my wife got me a map of Route 66 drawn by Bob Waldmire. Loved it and still love her.

  7. Tom Baddley

    Best written article on _Cars_ I’ve read yet! Great job pulling together all those photos for comparison. I had to mention this on Lost Tulsa, since it mentions the Rt. 66 bridge and Wallis.

  8. JoAnne

    Wow. In March of this year, my fiancee and I traveled Route 66 (a long-held dream of mine) from Missouri to Flagstaff. I recognized many of the places and inspirations in the movie, and we stopped at a great many of the places mentioned above. I teared up in the movie…when they talked about Route 66 fading away and people staying on the Interstate to shave 10 minutes off their trip. People really do need to slow down and enjoy the journey. My Route 66 trip was the best vacation and best time we’ve ever had, and we’re already planning to do it again…the whole way this time. Thanks for the article…it was wonderful!!

  9. anita

    Thank you so much! What a great article! We just saw the movie and it was one of the best I’ve seen in a very long time. I’ve always wanted to travel Route 66, so now I have a good idea of where to start.

  10. RoadDog

    It is too bad that this is not handed out at the theaters. This would no doubt whet the appetites of those who are not familiar with our road.

    Outstanding job on tying it all together. That had to consume a lot of time.

    Unfortunately, the canopy over the former gas pumps at the Towanda station have been removed, but the Kicks on 66 bar and restaurant rates a definite stop. You’ve got to try their pig wings.

  11. Ron

    RoadDog, I figure that I can reach more people on the Internet than anyone ever could handing out fliers. Anita’s response just above yours explains why I spent so much time on this project.

    And everyone, thank you for the kind words.

  12. Ernie

    My wife and I plan to drive the whole Route in September of this year. We have not yet seen the movie but I appreciate the effort you have put in to making it real. Thank you for your dedication

  13. Shine

    WoWSA! What a great piece you’ve put together here.
    Due to my dialup way over here in New Zealand it’s all unfolding at a perfect speed for me to carefully savour it! hehehe

    Thanks!

  14. Frank Matson

    My wife and I have driven the “old road” 9 times in the last 8 years and are going again in August. We watched CARS yesterday and recognized most of what you have shown us here in this piece. You did a masterful piece explaining who inspired what car and what place resembles a Mother Road location. Keep up the good work!!

  15. Lee

    Was told by this site by Kathryn here in oz. Awesome!! Have just come back from seeing this movie.
    Makes me wanna pack up the family and head on over to travel along Route 66.

  16. Love to Travel

    After seeing the movie I could tell there was a message in it. That is why I started looking around for more info. Thanks for the background.

  17. Jacque

    We just took our 3 boys, ages 9, 5, 3. They truly loved the movie, and we found it a great opportunity to teach them a little history after the movie!!

  18. Jeremy

    This is a great little piece about a fading part of American history. The site and images mentioned are just a part of the sites in the movie, but I can hardly blame you for choosing these. There’s also the mesa shapes like the old Pontiac hood ornaments, and the history of the Hudson automobile in Nascar racing. Between ’51 and ’53 the “Fabulous Hudson Hornet” dominated nascar with a better than 50% win record. That is better than any manufacturer since, due in large part to its ‘step down design’ that greatly lowered the car’s center of gravity. It was the fastest American production car of its time with a top speed of 132 mph and still managed to get 36 mpg highway! They were inexplicably absorbed into the AMC corp in ’56, but left behind a stunning history. That’s the reason I ended up naming my son Hudson, and I’m currently restoring a ’52 Hornet for his first car. In short, Pixar couldn’t have chosen a better representation of former Nascar Glory.

  19. Ron

    Great! Let us know how the restoration of that Hudson is going. I have to admit, “Cars” certainly has piqued my interest in early-’50s Hudsons.

  20. Donna

    This website is awesome! I have been a lifelong Disnut and now, thanks to Cars, am beginning to understand the fascination with the Mother Road. Thanks so much for all your hard work on this site. It really is fantastic.

    Donna (a friend of Laurel’s)

  21. Anonymous

    What a Wonderful Job. I am 27 and really didn’t know much about Route 66 until I saw Cars tonight. Thanks for all the useful information !!

  22. John Stoughton, from Holland, MI

    I ride with a group that does Rte 66 every year by motorcycle. We begin from downtown Chicago on the second Saturday in June and get to the Santa Monica pier a week later.

    This is an AWESOME site! I have not yet seen the movie, but I can’t wait to take my grandson. Congrats and THANK YOU!

    — john

  23. Mike Hull

    The desert view that you indicate is La Bajada Hill in New Mexico is actually in CA. If you send me your email address I can send you a picured painted by noted Rte 66 artist Jerry McClannahan that shows this view. I believe it is near Amboy CA.

  24. Mike Hull

    I just checked the picture. I believe the scene in question shows the view from “Roy’s”, a gas station and diner. McClanahan has also illustrated a series of maps with Jerry Ross that allows modern travellers to travel the remaining sections of Rte 66.

  25. Anonymous

    Saw the movie “Cars” and was curious to how close some of the similarities are to Rte 66. Now I’m planning on driving across Arizona to see some of the sites. Good site – thank you!

  26. François TOURET

    je trouve ce film formidable, il m’ a impressionné, surtout que la “route 66″ vive, encore merci à tous ceux qui ont participé à la réalisation de ce film, c’est un documentaire présenté d’une manière moderne qui dénonce les méfaits des autoroutes, ce film transmet un message, halte au massacre de la nature, restons naturel !

  27. Jeff

    How many people are interested in keeping RTE 66 together after seeing this movie? I am one of them! When I ride my motorcycle, I always take the old routes, and stay away from the Interstate highways. I choose these routes because you can slow down and see nostalgia, history, and you will get closer to the “heart” of America this way. After seeing Cars, I was amazed at how cleverly the creators/writers of this movie condensed a week long trip into 2 hours. Ron, you did a great job of pulling these pieces together, and if we can get Mr. Wallis involved in the board here, it would be even better. I for one, would love to see RTE 66 completely marked on the maps and roads – as it was!

  28. Dave

    Had a chance to see Cars at the Drive-In in Neligh, NE. That was a great opportunity. Great movie about a great piece of American History, showing on another great piece of American History. Great time!

  29. Keith Demko

    Wow … that was one of the most informative posts I’ve read in years! .. thanks … as for Cars, I’m way behind on flicks, but will finally get to see it today .. can’t wait!

  30. Tom Moe

    Does anyone know of a motel in/under a rock in eastern Utah/Western Colorado? I remember seeing one on a trip in that area, and was reminded of it when I saw the Wheel Well Motel in “Cars”.

  31. Sarah

    This is great! I didn’t know how all the characters/places tied into real people/places. Cars is a great movie :)

  32. Ginou

    GREAT job, thanks so much! It’s nice to put a face to a name. Can’t wait till we “do” Route 66 in October this year.

  33. Al W

    I saw a picture in an older book about rt.66 that clearly showed
    a gas station carved out of rock in the shape of an early wooden car wheel. I don’t remember if there was a motel also, but the photo
    shows two old time gas pumps and a mid-late twentys touring car. I don’t remember where it was said to be, but a photo of the part of the road that has such sharp curvs and switch backs, north east of Oatman, AZ. was on the same paige

  34. joe jack

    this is very interesting information. thank you for makeing this website! i loved the movie cars. my favorite characters were mater, ramone, lightning, and fillmore.who were ya’ll’s?

  35. roy

    i have traveled route 66. i think it is cool to know the places and people in ‘cars’ really exist. does anyone know who red is based on? and if anyone knows who stanley is based on please tell. i’m just wondering. thanks for the help. cool website!!!!

  36. Ron

    Roy, Lightning McQueen does have a bit of Steve McQueen in mind. But there also was a Pixar staff whose last name was McQueen, and this played a role. The look of Lightning McQueen is based on a host of race car designs, according to Pixar. But it’s amazing late in the film, when Lightning gets a new paint job, that he suddenly looks a lot like that Corvette from the original “Route 66″ television show.

    I’m not aware of Red being based on anybody. He was voiced by Pixar staffer Joe Ranft before he died in a car wreck last year.

    I’m not aware of the Stanley statue being based on anybody. In small towns all across America, it’s not uncommon to find a statue of the town’s founder. It’s obvious Pixar took a page from this.

  37. Ron

    Al W., if you ever encounter that picture of the wheel-shaped business carved into the rock, scan it and e-mail the image to route66news(at)yahoo(dot)com . I’d love to see it.

    To my knowledge, there was no such business along Oatman Road. But who knows … you may have an image of something that’s quite rare.

  38. Allen Z

    As soon as I saw the advertizements for Cars, I knew I wanted to see this Movie. Being a car buff as I am, I related to the characters. It was all that I expected and more. It was so realistically clear for an animation. It brought tears to my eyes of the love and kindness and emotion of what the story was all about. “Cars the Movie” was a real inspiration to me. This is the kind of movie America needs to be watching. This is one movie I will buy when the cd comes out. I want this movie for all times.

  39. Woodesigner

    Just saw the movie last night. My wife & I have always wanted to travel down some of Route 66. This film & your great information here have certainly inspired us to do that someday soon.

    The research done for this film had to be extensive & meticulous! The race track scenes showed so many aspects of a Nascar track it was amazing. Now I can see they did the same for Route 66.

    Thanks again for your info!

  40. Ron

    It’s possible, but not likely. Pixar people have never mentioned it in interviews. The hole in the rock in the movie more closely resembles the old Chief Yellowhorse Trading Post at the New Mexico-Arizona border along Route 66.

  41. Dan England

    Great blog and great post. Very informative. I linked to it on my post “Cars The Movie and Route 66″ on my blog “Traveling Route 66″.

    I also added your blog to my links.

  42. John Lee

    Thanks for all the great info on this site. We saw the movie the first weekend, then a week later on a trip to Arizona we drove a couple short stretches of Route 66.

    Re: Your suggestion that Tucumcari, NM, “best resembles Radiator Springs,” we went through Seligman, Arizona, and it is a perfect model for Radiator Springs — desert, mountains, on old Route 66, bypassed by the Interstate highway. The residents and businesses try to make a living off their historic heritage by selling Route 66 post cards, signs and other souvenirs. And the old cars parked in town all have eyes painted on the windshields, like the CARS cars! Three 1959 Edsels have eyes on their windshields, which I don’t think was done since the movie came out, because we were there only a week after seeing the movie. I think they’ve been that way for some time, and that someone connected with the movie saw them and picked up the theme.

    I’d like to know what you think!

    I am planning an article for Old Cars Weekly and would hope to use some of your info and refer people to your website.

  43. Ron

    I agree that Seligman is also an excellent town that’s comparable to Radiator Springs, and I’m sure it exerted some influence on Pixar’s animators.

    However, I think Tucumcari is a better model, and here’s why:

    — The big mountain in the background resembles Tucumcari Mountain, complete with the town’s initials painted on it.

    — Tucumcari has a stoplight in the center of town just like Radiator Springs.

    — The Cozy Cone Motel bears a lot of resemblance to the Blue Swallow Motel in Tucumari.

    — The Glenrio Motel in Radiator Springs is a reference to Glenrio, a ghost town about 45 minutes east of Tucumcari.

    — Like Radiator Springs, Tucumcari is a desert town.

    — The scene in which the cars drive down Route 66 under the glow of neon lights looks a lot like Tucumcari a night, which still has plenty of neon. Seligman has fewer vintage neon signs.

    — Seligman has plenty of kitsch, like the Sno-Cap Drive-In and Angel Delgadillo’s barbershop. Tucumcari has plenty of kitsch, too, like a Mexican restaurant in the shape of a sombrero and Tee Pee Curios, which is in the shape of a teepee, and a grocery store that’s all decorated in a Route 66 motif. Edge: Tucumcari.

    I was in Seligman a little less than a year ago, and I saw no cars with eyes painted on the windshields. I think it was done expressly for the movie, and most people in the Route 66 community knew this film was coming months in advance. Like all smart businesspeople, they prepared for it. Dawn Welch of the Rock Cafe had “Cars” decorations in front of her restaurant the minute the movie was released wide.

    Thanks for referring to my site with your article. If you need to get a hold of me, just check the “About Me” tab on the home page and the information will be there.

  44. roy

    i went to Seligman on”route 66″ 3 days after CARS came out and i didnt see the old cars with the eyes on the windshield, maybe i was too early? they obviously haven’t been there that long. and when i said i went on “route 66″, i meant i was only in Arizona.

  45. James Michalek

    > It is too bad that this is not handed out at the theaters. This would
    > no doubt whet the appetites of those who are not familiar with our
    > road.

    I’d like to suggest Apple stores (as Steve Jobs owns both Pixar and Apple Computers) as another source of new roadies.

  46. Kiersten

    I love cars it was funny .My favorite charicter was doc hudson because he used to be a piston cup racer and I felt bad for nim when he got in that wreck and I felt sorry for him.I do not like sarge because he is all was me and I now that he is soupouse to be but still he is all was mean.I also like romone because I like to do body art to.If inebody is reading this than they shud get the game it is fun and funny.

  47. David and Eamonn

    We loved the movie cars. We liked it sooooooooo much that we are getting the ps2 game. Our favorite charcters were Lightning McQueen and Mack because Lightning McQueen was a very fast racing car which we like and we also thought Mack was great because he was Lightning McQueens true friend and he also had cool gadgets on his lorry. We didn’t like the street racers as they played sleeply music which made mack fall asleep and go off road.

  48. rafael

    I haven’t ever been a fan of Disney movies (nor Pixar ones) but this one certainly made an impact on me and my girlfriend who went to see it together. We are seriously considering a honeymoon down Route 66 since we have told ourselves half-jokingly we can certainly relate to Lightning McQueen and Sally Carrera… That would be great

  49. Anonymous

    E mailing from the UK. This is the best blog i have Ever Read. based on the best disney movie ever.
    I’d love to travel down route 66 one day!

  50. John.

    Another Email from Britain. Cars is a very popular movie over here at present (It is no1 in the cinemas). This movie is the finest of the year by far! I found your article thru a link on the blogger site. It is the best article I have ever read on the Internet anywhere in the World.

  51. Maris & Leila

    What a fabulous site. I’ve just sent it off to a friend whom is about to embark on a very quick 3 week trip of Route 66 after seeing the movie (we live in Australia) She said this site was absolutely the best help. My daughter who is only 4 has “dragged” me willingly of course to see it twice. SHe is so in love with Fillmore that she takes her cars with her to bed and of course she has a cube pillow – The Love Bus is her hero. Mind you she was also the one who told me that the clouds were tyre marks. Again thanks for a spectacular site and its in my favourites.

  52. Kulhwch

    Sort of odd that Waldmire refused to give his name officially because as a Vegan he is opposed to a toy to be handed out at MacDonalds that could connect him to meat. It’s odd because as pointed out in the Marathon Tour DVD set interview with him, his folks own Cozy Dog and he uses them as a base of operation. Cozy dogs are meat (well, maybe you could argue that hotdogs aren’t exactly meat, but I ate a sausage sandwich there a month or two back, and that’s meat for sure) yet he’s okay with using them for a base and selling his stuff through them. Maybe he couldn’t get a percentage?

  53. Ron

    Well, it’s one thing for him to sell stuff through the Cozy Dog, because that’s family.

    He had several reasons why he turned down McDonald’s, the vegetarian thing being just one of them.

  54. Kulhwch

    Just FYI, Doc Hudson is also based on a real person. John Steinbeck.

    He wrote the Grapes of Wrath in which Route 66 is first referred to as the Mother Road. The Joad family in that novel came out west on Route 66 in a Hudson Super Six Sedan that had been converted into a truck, hence the ‘Hudson’ part of the name.

    John Steinbeck’s most well-known character (who didn’t appear in Grapes of Wrath, by the way) was Doc from Cannery Row and Sweet Thursday, modelled after his friend Ed ‘Doc’ Ricketts. Hence the ‘Doc’ part of the name.

    So Doc Hudson is clearly a reference to John Steinbeck, who publicised the Mother Road so well.

    I knew that majoring in Literature in college would come in handy someday … ;)

    1. jeff johnson

      Guess majoring in Literature did not quite pay off… Ha

      Doc Hudson is based on the real-life Fabulous Hudson Hornet in NASCAR competition driven by Herb Thomas and Marshall Teague.

      Not Steinbeck.

  55. sam

    I’m from the north so until i moved to oklahoma two years ago it was just some old road i crossed driving cross country. I recently visited Arcadia,ok its amazing I loved it. I also am lucky enough to work in El Reno and for those of you that pass thru there on 66 you have to check out Sids diner (off hours) its packed wall to wall otherwise. Ive recently decdied that i am going to take my vaction and travel rt 66 from start to finish a little each vaction so i can enjoy it. im already looking forwardto my first one in oct..

  56. Brandi

    My grandparents and some of my other family members live in Adrian TX, the Midpoint of Rt. 66. I grew up around that area mostly in Amarillo TX. I loved the Movie Cars it made me tear up a bit. I live in IL now and am not anywhere near Rt. 66 or I-40 anymore I miss home and can’t hardly wait to go back and visit all off my family and friends. Thanks for sharing all of this information with us I think it is neat how you spread the word about the Mother Road and made the characters after real people, and took scenes from all over to make Radiator Springs. Oh and my husband loves Mater!

    Brandi

  57. Julie

    Ron,
    I came across your site while looking for photos from the Cars movie to use for a theme party for my twin 3 year old boys who loved the film. I have a new interest in seeing the movie again now that I have a ‘reality connection’ from your information. You really take for granted the work that goes into these films – thanks for filling in the blanks and making it more interesting to watch a million times after we purchase the DVD next month!

  58. Andrew

    enjoyed reading the note, glad to see some effort went in to the movie. I liked the movie in the same way as I liked buzz lightyear. Spotted this when looking fopr a map of the game for my kids os me as well the game on the ps2 is fun as well. I now want to make 66 part of my next holiday trip to the states.

  59. Benjamin. from TOULOUSE (france)

    hello ! i’m french ! GREAT POST !!! i have to return an English duty on an element of road 66… and that much will help me! THANK YOU !!
    likes we say in french : merci beaucoup beaucoup !! c’est un travail remarquable !!! felicitation !
    humm…sorry if i don’t have a very very good english

  60. ANW

    I just want to say that I am orginally from Stroud oklahoma, and I have eaten at the Rock Cafe… ITS SOOO GOOOD, my dad used to eat there for lunch all the time… if anyone ever gets a chance to stop by stroud you should, just keep truckin on into davenport and chandler… they are small towns but hold alot of history… the movie was awesome made me cry..

  61. Jayanta Bhowmik

    outstanding. thank you for taking the time to stitch reality and fiction. “cars” was an impeccable movie but what i found here enhanced my “cars” experience immensely. thank you, Ron.

  62. Brittany Barron

    I love the movie cars and I amwatching the mmovie right now . I am at the part where He is getting to win or loose the pistion cup.

  63. karen

    I have been watching cars, and am really happy with how well the animators did with the whole movie. I live along i-40 and was really suprised with the accuracy with the land marks. I live in Holbrook, AZ which is along route 66 and watched my grandparents lose their motel and restraunt because of the interstate bypass. This movie was so accuarate in so many areas that it is almost unbelievable. I loved it!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  64. Chris and Becky

    Great post Ron,

    We’ve only travelled from Amarillo westwards on 66, in fact on our honeymoon in 2005. It was only recently we got to see the film whilst on a longhaul flight out to the middle east and to be honest I actually found the whole thing quite emotional after having been to many of the bypassed route 66 towns linked with the film.

    The most amazing thing out of all the homages paid in the film to me was, and here we are in total agreement with our suposition I think, the character of Flo. It must have taken me all of about 20 seconds to realise she was based on the wonderful Fran Houser, who I’ve only met twice, but who obviously made such a huge impression on our Route 66 trip last year.

    Maybe its about time we came back and did the rest of the mother road soon and met some of the other great characters along the way. And we’re getting a hankering for that Ugly Crust Pie!

  65. stacey caudill

    hello my name is Stacey Caudill i would like to say a few words about the movie Cars my favorite person in the whole movie is Mater the Tow Truck i have alot of stuff of Mater i really like him alot he makes the whole movie i think

  66. RHIANNON BARNES AGE 11 LIVES AT 19

    I mrecken that your movie is so good but i like mator the best because he’s so funny. lihtning mecqueen is sorter good and cut I like mator because in the ghost light it is funny when he scares lightning maqueen. And when he has the light on the hook of his toe truckand gets scared and runs of.

  67. anna-43 going on 10

    absolutely my all time favourite movie to date. this is how ive always looked at vehicles with different characters. i have three old intternationals as my watchdogs out the front of my dugout home in the old opal town of cooberpedy. mater is my long lost mate.id love to have him visit.ive worn out my boys dvd .ive wornout my boys dvd replaying his parts.havent laughed so much in ages.”to not to”.

  68. Margaret (Australia)

    Thanks for the great information… I’m making a fabric ‘play mat’ for the 4yr old grandson to use with his Cars cars for Christmas… I only get to see the Cars DVD very ocassionally (when he’ll let me!), and this information helps me design it convincingly. A great use of the internet as far as I’m concerned!

  69. Bill Johnson

    In the 60s when I was 14 yrs old, I travled to California with family from Oklahoma. Already, parts of 66 were diverted to the new partially finished I-40, but I will never forget the sights of that trip! Wow, streches of desert that seemed endless.

    A couple of years ago, my wife and I drove to California on I-40. We took 3 days to get there. Tucomcari, Petrified Forest, Painted Desert, Grand Cannon, the whole deal. I took a GPS and a laptop running STreets and Trips. Each time I saw a section of 66 running adjacent, I’d get off, drive to it and enjoy the old road!. I don’t remeber where it was, probably in New Mexico, when we got on the old road, the concrete appeared to have been shattered, consistantly from side to side for many miles. Our little Buick 88 could barely move at all on the rough stuff. It was as if someone purposely destroyed the pavement.

    I hated to see 66 go. I wish Martin Millner was still driving that Vet up and down going odd jobs and having adventures! Those were the days!

    “Oklahoma City is oh so pretty”

    Bill Johnson

  70. Elise

    I am a 48 year old with a very active ‘inner child’ who absolutely LOVES this movie! Best animated ever I think. It was fun to try to find all the similarities of the Road in the movie. Love that Mater…he is my favorite by far. I had a room at my house completely decorated in Route 66 items as I love the road and not only have traveled it in its entirety but drive it every chance I get.
    Since the movie, I have incorporated items from the movie, CARS, into my room and now the kids that come around love it! Mater alarm clock, Mater rug, original movie poster from the theater in my town, DVD displays from the store when the movie came out….and more…Plus it gives me a chance to share more about the road.
    Thanks to PIXAR for one awesome movie. This kid-at-heart (still!) loves!

  71. Kathy

    What a cute movie. My grandson (18 months) loves it so much he will not even sit to watch it. He stands and squeels with delight. Thank you from the adults also, we all love it. Great message also.

  72. Jim Suttles

    Route 66 was the main hiway before I-40 was built. It really brings back memories of my childhood, when I was 8 or 9 years old, traveling with Dad and Mom. It is real nice to take the senic road again. I wish the old road was all the way across, instead of portions of it.

  73. Rex

    Hi Fantastic site , loved the Movie , it struck a chord with my love of classic cars and road trips . We recently went out of town to town a lttle way up North from us and found our selves on a road that has been by passed too by a new motorway extension . We couldn’t help but compare it to Cars , it was a little sad to see the run shops and closed petrol stations .
    Rex ,Auckland New Zealand

  74. Michael Moon USA

    Thanks for the memories…..I enjoyed the movie ever so much. Let me tell you why.
    My parents (from whom I got my wanderlust that is still a part of my persona today) and I, traveled the “Mother Road” many times in the 40’s and 50’s. I must admit,….my eyes watered up a bit when the movie pointed out that sometimes we need to take the less traveled path, reminded me of both of my parents who were always inclined to do so, and by doing so we experienced many unique places, saw many unique things, and met many unique people as we took our trips “out west”.
    I’m so very pleased to have had the experience of traveling every mile of the “Mother Road” in it’s heyday. One trip in a 47 Buick convertable. They were wonderful times, that I shared with my wonderful parents, along the wonderful American road called “Route 66″.
    Again, to all those involved in the production of this movie……Thanks,……for the memories.

  75. Ragcsák Szabolcs

    Sziasztok.Magyarországrol irok nektek.Van két fiam.Benjamin 6-éves,Dániel 5-éves.Nagyon tetszett a film.Amiota megvettük,minden nap megnézik,töbször is .Egyszer szeretnénk ellátogatni hozzátok.Egyszer remélem sikerül.Sziasztok.Irjatok vissza magyarul.
    Bay-Bay ,Mcqveen.Örülnénk ha meghivnátok.

  76. Giannini Loffreda

    A film to see anytime, now and forever. Amazing history, amazing job! Thanks for the makers! Giannini – Brasil

  77. Paul

    Cars is a wonderful film that has become an instant classic.your blog is best blog I’ve ever seen on the Internet. This fabulous Highway is loved all over the world. I hope one day to travel this road (Preferably in a 1959 Coupe De Ville).

    Happy Christmas to you all from wet and windy Britain.

  78. Shannan Gallegly

    My son got this movie for his second birthday in November. Since then we have seen it at least three dozen times. He refers to it as “music”. It is a wonderful movie and has really peaked my interest in Route 66. I’m 36 years old and have for a long time had some knowledge of the Road and have heard the song but never really knew how much the interstate had been diverted away from the original Route and how many towns and businesses had been driven into oblivion because of it. It always makes me sad to see beautiful old buildings and Mom and Pop shops being thrown away so easily now a days. I hope that this movie has opened alot of eyes…just like it did mine and I hope that one day I will get to travel Route 66 and see some of the things people here have talked about in person. Maybe by then more people will have realized just how important it is to preserve this unique piece of America and a major revitalization will be under way.

    -Progress is of no value if we strip away everything we have ever known to the point that we cannot remember where we came from.-

  79. Sherri Caldwell - The Rebel Housewife

    Ron, Thank you so much for sharing your website and info with me! I have been looking around your site, and I’ve enjoyed the wealth of Route 66 info you have here. This CARS animation/reality breakdown is FABULOUS — it will be so helpful with the kids! I will link back from RebelHousewife.com, and I’m sure we’ll be in touch as our Route 66 Family Road Trip Adventure draws closer — thanks again!!

  80. Karen

    I wondered if the places in Cars were replicas of places on Route 66
    It was a pleasure, very interesting and informative….

    Thank you

  81. Rebecca

    Ron, Thank you so much for putting together all of this information on your website. I am travelling from Australia to the USA in September 2007, to drive the entire length of Route 66. I was given the CARS DVD as a Christmas gift, and whilst I recognised some of the CARS/Route 66 links, your website has really helped me add even more highlights to my itinerary, and provided me with some excellent ideas on reading/reference material. Thanks again!!!

  82. Big John (Southeast Georgia)

    This calls for a serious ROAD TRIP!!! Been lookin’ fer a reason to go visit mom in California for a while, anyway.

  83. Carolyn

    My two year old loves the movie “Cars” and he always either has “Stickers” or Mater with him at all times. We got him a race car bed before the movie came out and now his whole room is cars.
    I also thought that looking at the pictures was fun because I used to work at the Costco just across the street from the Leaning Tower in Niles, Illinois. When I first saw the tower I was suprised.

    Well I think it is kind of crazy my son loves cars and his name is Carson. We named him well. We watch Cars or Mater and the Ghostlight daily.

  84. jennifer lowry

    this was the best movie that i have ever sine but can you just give the site where little kids can color the car and they can make card for friends and for family like for b-days thanks

  85. theunnies

    This movie keeps my 4 ear old grandson eating his breakfast, lunch and dinner and for the reward of putting it on , he will have his nasal drops and medicines too .
    Great going
    where can we get the sound track and music of this movie ? please email to captioning tje mail as, “Macqueen”

  86. John B Norris

    This little old welshman has bumbled along I-40 a few times and been drawn on to the highway it replaced. I have gawped, eaten at diners and generally enjoyed visiting several segments of the mother road across Az and Ca. I recently bought the film “Cars” on DVD and got blown away. I`m a sentimental old petrolhead and loved every minute of the film. Thanks for the summation and tie-ups. They can only add to my pleasure and nostalgia for my favourite places. Jaybee Norris

  87. Ariana(8yrs)

    Thank you for making this great movie cars I hope all the people who watched liked the movie as much as I as in myself liked the movie Cars.And hope you make a new on just as great as this one ……..but you can makeit way more humoros.Okay?And if you make another one make this year please and hope Sally and Lightning have who want refill their dads dream of winnig the piston cup.but their dad told that its just an empty cup but they won it for him for father cars day and they worked all night changing the letters to;HAPPY FATHER CARS DAY .In the morning lightning saw what his kids made for him and saw Sammy and Lewis sleeping then they woke and yelled happy father cars day!then he thanked them showed Sally and Mator.

  88. Mike, Becky, and Michelle

    Stumbled across your site when I was looking to see if there really was a Wheel Well Inn. Thank you for all the research and interesting info. We have traveled Route 66 before but never put it all together. This makes Cars even more enjoyable.

  89. Liz and James

    Thanks for the movie Cars it was wonderful. My son Love Mater he always likes to say his part. I enjoy the movie because it teaches you about life and we need more movies like that. This movie is a movie that you just never get tired of. I wish all of you the best in the future and keep up the good work. By the way you guy are so funny.God Bless

  90. londons mom

    Fascinating!!!! My co worker and I were just wondering if there was a ‘real’ radiator springs. (she was indoctrinated last night…and is hooked as I have been for months!) Thank you for your excellent contribution to the web!

  91. River's Mom

    Great Website, makes me wanna load the kids up and take off across the land in our mini van. Only I hope we end up better than the mini van travelers at the end of the movie. My son recieved “Cars” for xmas and have wached it at least twice a day since and I have been wondering where Pixar/Disney got their inspriation from. Great website, lots of information and lots of great pictures.

  92. Dafydd (Wales)

    Cars has now become a disney classic that will be enjoyed by youngsters and adults for generations to come. Great blog! The best on the Web!

  93. vivienne

    this is my favorite movie ever and always will be! i was touched by this movie and think it is the best thing ever!! i love the whole idea and the morel of the movie, and i love Lightning McQueen!!! I LOVE THIS MOVIE!!!!!!!

  94. keeran

    hey im 20 years old but i have a sister thats 6 from the day we got the movie havn’t stop wacthing it,form my point of view its the best movie of 2006!!!! i can’t for cars 2 to come out!!

  95. simran jot kaur dhillon

    guess what when i saw that movie every day i saw my mothercan we have that movie and i got it now when ”cars” movie 2came that would
    be best love it………………………

  96. Woodsmok1227

    Dave : about the Cars font

    This is what I’ve found… no free source of it found in my searches

    YMMV

    Googling told me about Magneto which some experts are claiming is the font used by Pixar.

    http://www.abstractfonts.com/search/magneto

    from that link you can see that font is not free.

    From AeNigma’s free font archive I found Lowdown
    aenigmafonts.com/fonts/fontsl.html

    which is at least free but not that close

    I also found
    mickeyavenue.com/fonts/di…ewareFonts

    which includes some free fonts based on Disney movies but again if Cars is there I’m missing it.

    Hope that helps

    Neat site with an incredible amount of nifty information. I’ll be back to read more.

    Come on over to

    http://www.carsthetoys.com if you are a Cars toy nut like me.

    http://p067.ezboard.com/bcarsthetoys

    sorry but to keep the place nice we make you apply for membership

  97. John from Swansea

    Great Blog! Cars is also a great Movie! This famous Highway is so atmospheric (In Europe we see Route 66 in those great old road movies). In Europe crazy politicians are unfairly blaming the automobile for global warming which means we might face a future over here of restrictions in the use of our cars. I would like one day to travel this legendary highway and stay in The world famous Blue swallow Motel in Tucumcari.. My son would like to stay at The Cozy Cone Motel. (It would be great if there was such a place).

  98. Moonhyuk Choe

    Thanks for showing all the historic places, it really looks like what I’ve seen on Cars. I’ll remember Cars forever.

  99. kavya

    epic,

    man its amazing…i simply wanna spend time visitin tis lovely paradise-that’s what it seems to me*!
    awsome work…thanx to all o’them who contributed in bringing out the best pic. of the story behind Cars…!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  100. SHADOW

    I DRIVE A TRUCK AND HAVE ALWAYS BEEN CURIOUS ABOUT SOME OF THE SCENERY THAT IS ON RT.66. I HAVE PASSED ALONG I-40 HUNDREDS OF TIMES, AND NEVER TOOK THE TIME TO SLOW DOWN AND LOOK AROUND. THIS LAST WEEK I DELIVERED IN KINGMAN, AZ. SPENDING THE REST OF THE DAY LOOKING AROUND ALONG THE KINGMAN PART OF RT 66. IT WAS NICE TO SLOW DOWN AND SNJOY THE SITES OF THE HISTORICAL HIWAY.

  101. WillieD

    Ron,
    Great job relating the scenes in “Cars” to real life places found on Route 66. I have always heard much about “The Mother Road” but I am too young to remember a time when it was the only way to travel. Your blog has inspired me to set aside some time to travel parts of Route 66 with camera in hand. And since we live in Oklahoma, there is much to see within a short drive. BTW, my three year old loves to watch the movie pretty much daily, which is great with me. After reading this blog, I now understand some of the references in the movie that relate to real places or things. Many thanks, William

  102. Marty

    I thoroughly enjoyed this post. Glad that Bob Waldmire is still alive and cantankerous as ever. My purchase of the DVD of cars was to be able to stop the credits so that I could see who I know that got mentioned. Since you don’t mention some of them, I’ll direct folks to my blog about them. http://6t6signman.typepad.com

    In your resources for a trip on Route 66 there is no resource for the item that made Route 66…route 66. The highway marker signs along the side of the road. Authentic heavy steel highway marker signs for all 8 states can be found at: http://www.crossroadsigns.com

  103. Anonymous

    my name is william and im 2 1/2 years old, i like cars because i like mator and sally and lightning and stanley and red and flo and ramone

  104. Anonymous

    FYI: There is a Cool Springs in Arizona on the opposite side of the twisty grade of Route 66 that runs from Kingman to Oatman….
    Thanks for all the great info on your site…My 3 1/2 y.o. son is now, thanks to Cars, a Route 66 fanatic. I plan to use your info to devise a driving route that will enable him to experience the joy of the Mother Road from his unique perspective.

    1. Jeff F.

      There is not much in Cool Springs, AZ – Except, a very cool, restored gas station and trading post (they don’t sell gas). In the immediate view from Cool Springs IS the actual Willy’s Butte (in the little shop is a had written note and cartoonish drawing by John Lasseter of Pixar, which actually says Cool Springs IS the real Radiator Springs. A little further west is what is left of Ed’s camp, but it is private property, and you can’t see much there. A bit further west of that is Fishbowl Springs, which is very cool. When we were there, in the middle of a very desolate landscape (at 107 degrees F.), if you can find it (EZ66 Guide) you can climb up about 25 steps someone built into the side of a cliff, and at the top is a hand-build culvert – made apparently to catch water from a natural ‘seep’ through the rocks. Swimming around in the culvert are actual live goldfish!

      1. Ron

        To claim Cool Springs is THE Radiator Springs is highly dubious. Michael Wallis, who’s been a part of the “Cars” creative process from the beginning, has made it abundantly clear to me that Radiator Springs is a composite of several Route 66 towns, including Seligman, Ariz., Glenrio, Texas, and Tucumcari, N.M.

  105. Tracy

    Thanks!!! My kids loved your site and it answered all the questions about they have been asking about what was real and what was not from the movie!!

  106. Liam Brady

    Fascinating and Wonderful blog! Everyone in the world who enjoyed the movie Cars and want to know more about Route 66 must read your excellent and informative article. I hope Cars recieves its deserved Oscar in the forthcoming academy awards for the best animation movie of the year!

  107. Loni

    I love the movie Cars. This site has really given me a new appreciation for the movie and the folks who took the time to respect the history of the setting they chose to make it in. Thank you for your hard work and time to put this together for the rest of us.

  108. Unnies

    Great
    Can someone give the URL from where I can download the music f Lightning Mcqueen ? My 4 year young grandson is crazy abut the music Please email to captioning ” Lightning mc Queen”, kindly. God bless you.
    theunnies.

  109. George (Australia)

    Its not often I get involved with these types of things but as CARS has now become my all time favorite movie I canot resist a quick comment.
    This site is wonderfull for an OZI who has become crazy about Route 66. I am planning a trip along the whole length of the route on an american classic HARLEY as soon as life and family permits.

    I love the movie so much that its a regular view on DVD for me and I also have the soundtrack to listen to when the mood requires it.

    Keep up the good work and all I can hope is that one day they do put Radiator Springs (Route 66) BACK ON THE MAP.

  110. Anonymous

    My friend’s son addors Cars . He is 3 years old and he broke his leg last week. He has to be immobilized for 5 weeks and he is little bit depressed. All he wants to do is to watch Cars. All the time. We bought all toys which exist on Cars and caracters from Cars in Croatia (Europe) but he has it all. I’m not entusiastic to buy things from internet but I wanted to, but the most e-shop don’t ship outside Usa. If somebody has something (posters, stickers,anything) form this cartoon and does not need it anymore, it would be great to send it to us. I would be grateful and send to you some interesting thins from my country. Music, or souvenirs.

  111. Nancy Matzke

    I was really looking for a site that had the direct connection between the images in the movie Cars and the Route 66 landmarks. Your site finally gave me the answers I was looking for. Thank you!

  112. Jon

    I was bitten by the ‘Route 66 bug’ because of the movie. My wife and I are now planning our own Route 66 trip. This site is going to be prove VERY valuable in planning on where and what we want to see. My son thinks that there is a real Radiator Springs. While this is not the case, I want to show him the sites that inspired the movie. Thank you for the effort!

  113. Doug

    I saw the Cars DVD recently and I was certain Radiator Springs was at least loosely patterned after Peach Springs, Arizona. Peach Springs is on the longest, most original stretch of Route 66 between Kingman and Seligman, Arizona. This old stretch (over 100 miles) of the mother road was long ago bypassed by I-40, but you can still drive it. Once you leave I-40 on this road, you can turn the clock way back to old route 66 days. There are still abandoned buildings that look like the “Cars” animations and on certain stretches you can see big trucks way over on I-40. In the distance, you see the classic red rock cliffs of Arizona. Also this is the road you must take to access the beautiful Havasu Falls you mentioned in the Havasupai portion of the Grand Canyon, but they are way, way off the old route 66 via a long drive and another long hike! Can’t even come close to driving there.

    There is another bypassed route 66 west of Kingman that goes to the classic town of Oatman. This stretch is hilly and winding (called the old Oatman grade in some route 66 materials). It resembles the road that the red race car and the blue VW were chasing each other (forgot the “Cars” character names, sorry.

    I’m just surprised no one mentioned these portions of the old route 66 and that the “Cars” credits offered no acknowledgement to these places.

  114. John

    My sons are 2 and 4 and both obsessed with this movie. Being we’ve seen it (I would guess 500+ times now!) some many times, I’m really noticing the small details that were put into this movie. Seems each time I’m watching part of it I notice something new. Kudos to the creators of this great film!

  115. Danielle

    This is just awesome!! Im going down rte 66 with my 9 year old son this spring, and I am going to print this for him.
    LOVE IT

  116. Damon

    My great grandma and I just finished looking up Route 66 and it was fun seeing how things on CARS was developed.

    When I get older I want to go on Route 66 and see what the past was like. It will be fun.

  117. Grant

    Wow this is great it was just i was looking for . It is even greater because of the way the town was made.thanks

  118. Madison Halford

    Wow this is great it was just i was looking for It is even greater because of the way the town was made.thank you!

  119. flur

    hi All, I fan “CARS” and very like song “Route 66″ by Depeche Mode and Country music and more

    I am Happy my friend, sorry my english
    Welcome to the Russia

  120. Yuk (melbourne Australia)

    Git-R-Done!
    Lightning McQueen: I’m serious! He’s got three Piston Cups!
    Mater: [spits out fuel] He did WHAT in his cup?

    Absolute pearler u guys, my kids love it , i love it, and the info is top shelf, being a Aussie and a Bruce Springsteen fan ive always wanted to know extactly about Route 66 and the Caddy ranch, cant wait to plan a holiday (vacation ) along the old Mother road!!!!

  121. valdo Neto Ribeiro

    O film “Cars” é espectacular, fiquei apaixonado por este e tambem pela pequena cidade RADIADOR SPRINGS…Espero um dia lá poder ir…

  122. JACOB.......NICOLE....

    yah!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! realy sweet i love this place my cousin NICOLE was looking for a place like this she’ll be happy to here i found one …….WOW……………..I LOVE IT ……JACOB/ NICOLE

  123. Ron

    There is a picture of Mater. However, I didn’t have a picture of Lightning McQueen because there are no apparent Route 66 inspirations for him.

  124. RUBEN, ADAMS

    I LOVE LEARNING ‘BOUT RT.66 ITS GREAT AND I ALSO LOVE “CARS” THE MOVIE IT’S SO FUNNY I THINK NOW THAT CARS IS OUT EVERY ONE WILL WANNA TRAVEL ON RT.66 ……EVEN ME ( WHEN IM OLD ENOUGH TO DRIVE ) &)

  125. Anonymous no more

    The answer to the question below is carefully, and without the owners knowledge!

    194. Braden Henderson – March 20, 2007
    My grandson Braden, fell in love with cow tipping, how is that done with real cows.

  126. Grace Anastasia

    My name is Grace Anastasia,32years. I’m from Semarang,Indonesia. My husband Edie WW,once told me there was a good movie about cars. Well,I don’t like race car. But,my mind had been change,since I saw Cars. This is the most incredible, amazing, awesome, hillarious movie I’ve ever seen. And my son Rafael is 2.5years,watch Cars everyday, almost everytime of the day. Morning,noon,evening,night and midnight :) So I bought 3 DVDs of Cars. I place them at Rafael’s bedroom, my mom’s room and our car (if we’re travelling). Although he can’t speak fluently, he can follow the dialogues with his short language. Laugh, “ka-chow”, “o-oh” and when Elvis say “Uh”, are his best favourite parts. There’s no Deleted Scene selected on DVD Cars from Indonesia,how can I see this content,Ron? Can you help me? Just wish if I were in Route 66. Long way from here. Hope there’ll be “Cars 2 The Next Story Of Route 66″. Thank for you Ron. This site answered my questions in my mind. Goodluck for you. Thanks to Pixar too. What a great job with a great team. Yeah…Ka-chow..

  127. aslamally doussoruth

    hello i’m aslam from mauritius i just luv that movie is the best ,i just like race cars . for the first time i had see the trailer movie car at a channel call be b4u music, me n my brother adore the movies.it’s a nice movie i would like that all people watch it. it’s very amazing it’s nice see u soon. bye from now.

  128. Chuck Long - Downey, CA

    I really love Route 66 and all of it’s history. I am in the process now of watching a 5 disc set called Route 66 Marathon Toure Chicago to LA. Really great stuff. Did not know that “Cars” got a lot of it’s scenes off of Route 66. I will have to get the movie and check it out. Great job on the cross-ties from “Cars” to Route 66. I have only been to a few locations on Route 66 (Oatman, Kingman) but found it to be a lot of fun looking at an age that has unfortunately passed. Watching the 5 disc set makes me want to take a trip down Route 66. Thanks

  129. james foster

    I love cars the movie its the best movie in the world! i like mcqueen the best. Thanks for makeing the movie. from james foster..

  130. Christopher .T. Ridley

    I think the movie ‘Cars’ is fantastic….I really hope that there is going to be a ‘Cars’ II ?!!….. Seeing how things are now in Radiator Springs ,and to know how Lightning and Sally are doing would be really brilliant…..would’nt it…???

  131. Michael

    I saw “Cars” for the first time last night. Cool movie, but the references to Rt 66 and what we have lost in it’s passing is immeserable! I never travelled the Mother Road, but I feel the loss on a personal level very deeply. Route 66 was to the 50s and 60s what the Oregon Trail was a century earlier, what the Trans-Continental Railroad was at the turn of the last century. This was a time when “getting there” was part of the adventure and rest stops were also “scenic”; a time when stopping for a look was part of the adventure too, and gave the traveller a chance to “fall in love” with our beautiful nation, just as Sally did in the flick.

    We also see how soon we forget — not just the beauty we’ve forgotten or miss when we simply blast past, but also the heros of the period –the Hudson Hornet really was the winningest car on the curcuit in those days. Now they don’t even race “real” cars on the NASCAR curcuit — they are “custom-built, one-offs” that bear no real resemblence and certainly no common parts to what we drive on our super highways to everywhere and nowhere (but we make good time!)

    Radiator Springs, as imaginary as it is, is Somewhere, if only in our minds and hearts.

  132. Lee Ann

    The movie is the greatest my 4 year old can recite almost the whole movie. He even calls me Sally and his dad Lightening and of course himself Mater. He watches this movie in our SUV eveytime the car is started so is this movie. I too would like to see a sequal on Sally and McQueen and Mater needs to find true love.

  133. T-G-S-R

    Great Site with alot Info. Always good to see other Cas fans, where im from im starting to think I am the only one. Only thing is no comments yet have mentioned My favorite Fillmore, He is hilarious along with his fued with Sarge. Alot like a real small town.

  134. Matthew

    42. reply, Jeff. I agree. I keep wondering what Route 66 would like in the Cars Movie. Since the road went through Radiator Springs, I’d like to know what the road would be like from the movie & where Radiator Springs would be on the map. Plus knowing where all of the original parts of Route 66 are, regardless of whether it’s still on the map or not because I want to drive the road all the way.

  135. Pamela Burkhalter

    Thanks for the great information. My son Taylor, who is 8, has wanted to go to Radiator Springs ever since we saw the “Cars” movie. He was very disappointed that is is a fictional town but thought all the info. was very cool. Hopefully, one day we can travel down Route 66 and see all the great things that you have shown here.

  136. NIQUA

    I LOVE THE MOVIE CARS!!!!!!!!!!! MY THREE YEAR OLD BROTHER WATCHES IT AND I LOVE IT. (I’M 15) HA HA. I THINK IT IS COOL HOW THEY MADE THE MOVIE TO BE BASED ON ACTUAL THINGS OF ROUTE 66. I LOVE YOUR WEB PAGE EXPLAINING MORE ABOUT THE SIMILARITIES OF THE MOVIE AND THE REAL THING! VERY COOL!

  137. Matthew

    What I mean is a map, not what inspired the parts of Route 66 in the Cars Movie. A fictional map, if any can be made or found, that looks as interesting and detailed, yet still in the style of the Movie of what Route 66 is like in the movie based off of the inspirations and information.

    http://title3.sde.state.ok.us/library/itv/wallis/route66.gif

    Something as interesting & cartoony style of the Cars Movie’s Route 66 as this book cover. Can anybody make one that shows the statue, made-up landmark, or one of the recognizable buildings in each town from the Movie? Like the ones in the poster, although that’s put into one place? Ask the director or whoever knows which towns & cities still exist in the Cars Movie, but weren’t shown? Thanks if you can.

  138. Cliffy Howe

    Hi all….im a 40 yr old male from Wales….and am going to travel the whole West side of the USA from Kansas this August…going for a year….anyone interested in coming with me…be my guest…..i could use some company….mail me if anyone is interested…thanks…[email protected]

  139. Steve Viner

    By the time the movie was over I was packing my stuff to head out for Radiator Springs! They need Garage Door Repairman right?
    One thing we need to remember is “JoeRanft”
    -http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Joe_Ranft
    I was so shocked to hear what happened to him, he never saw the final results. My hats off to ya Joe! May there be Hot Rods in heaven:)
    I am now making plans to tour ALL of 66 From start to finish. I will be traveling in a classic 1970 chevy C-20 Burnt Orange Truck Rod. And all my money will be spent……..off the Interstate :)
    Thx Pixar and Joe

  140. Alessandra

    I love Cars and The cheetah girls
    Its so cool and it got me interested in route 66
    I love all the cars I like ramon’s cool paint jobs

  141. Tommy (aged 8)

    visiting my uncle. showed me your great blog. love cars the movie.Sad their is no radiatorsprings but peachsprings sounds nice place.

  142. Siddharth Ravi

    This is excellent. Me and my son Dev love the movie. My dream is to do the route 66 some day (I am in India).

  143. Anonymous

    go mater yay lol well hope they have a new one !!!!! and i was wondering is u can c is there is mator in blue like wen it was in the earlier days wen hhe was blu3 cause i am doing a project for skool and i am not a nerd i am a skater /skateboarder and i am kinda sponsored and i ama paintballer i am sponsored and almost pro and im only in the 10th grade

  144. micheal jackson aka anonymous

    Its me anonymous and my sis we love the movie but I still cant find a blue mater can someone type something in this web site to find a blue mater and one more thing I ♥ed the movie *laughing* it so so funny wen mater and lightning went out to the farm to go tractor tipping lol it was hilarious hahahahaha well ty for making the movie

  145. FreeBird

    Another name for Fillmore may be from the Fillmore Auditorium that several Hippie groups performed their Psychedelic rock at. see entry 35 look up: on: Hippie – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

  146. cheri

    A year after the movie has come out and I am still surprised at the popularity of this movie. I was raised on the Majove desert and guess what my dad drove. A Hudson, so when I see Doc, alot of memories come back to me of my childhood. So all of you baby boomers, I can understand exactly how you feel. I get very nostalgic for the good old days. So lets remember we need to take better care of mother earth and the beauty she provides. Thanks for the blog and I am glad I am not alone in my good ole’ days obsessions. thanks

  147. Loretta L Flowers

    Hello my name is Austin Lee McCaslin, i loved your movie CARS I always go on the website http://www.CARS.com/ the movie really inspires me and i would like to tell you my book name is ROUTE 66 THE ROAD NEVER ENDS now i like how You have excitement in the movie and you have good abilites on the movie.

  148. Natalia Scheele

    wow..I have seen this movie for a thousand times…and I was wondering if that road really did excist…and now…for school the teacher gave me road 66 as subject for a presentation,a nd I thought: heey, thats also in Cars…and now I have visit some sites and it is incredible that the film is not only pure entertainment…however..this site is the best site for me to find information about the link between cars and the mother road

  149. Gary

    I’ll just say, Cars is a movie that you’ll want to watch, over and over, and over again — It’s impossible to get tired of this fantastic work of art in animation motion pictures.

  150. miles

    hi cars i liked your movie Miles and Mikey!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  151. Cohen

    Hi all,

    WOW!!!! Cars is a great movie. I’m making a powerpoint of all the cars and is going great i have some really and i mean really good pictures.

    Cohen

  152. Anonymous

    Don’t forget about Roy’s in Amboy, California… probably another inspiration for Flo’s Diner

  153. Jojo

    Wowowowow !!!
    CARS is the incredible movie. My son and myself love this movie so much and we still watch it until today. I’m still wondering why this movie didn’t win Oscar.

  154. Van Hornes

    Our family is absolutely obsessed with “Cars.” Our 2 year old son asks for it upon waking in the morning – “Cars, cars, cars – please, please, please.” Our pause button is worn out and the dvd has been permantly housed in the dvd player. Kasey tips everything over, even his mom, and says “Moo.” He carries his large Lightening McQueen race car everywhere with him. He has mesmorized all the characters names and sounds. Ever since the dvd came out, we have watched it everyday and played certain parts when we need a good laugh. It gets better each time and I am glad my son loves it and is growing up with great work of art. This website is the best. Thank you so much, Ron.

  155. Angela

    Thanks for all the info on the blog. My family is taking a road tripout west next month and were looking for some spots along the way reminiscent of the movie Cars. This helps us so much! Thanks for the info. I’ve tried researching it for a while, and your blog made it all way too easy!

  156. Marie

    THANK YOU! I love the experience of getting to “drive” through this site…the pics are amazing and I plan on using this site to help my students do some compare/contrast writing and anything else I can. Amzaingly Nostalgic! THANK YOU!

  157. Dennis

    So, somebody has to know where the inspiration for the Wheel Well Motel came from. I remember seeing some photo many years ago that resembled the Wheel Well and always thought I would someday be able to find it. Cars brought back that desire. I would surely like to find out just where it is (or was). I may not remember things sometimes, but I don’t think I started inventing memories that didn’t really exist, not yet anyhow.

  158. Mandy

    I have to say that now knowing all this great information, makes you appreciate the movie that much more. It was a really great movie for all ages.

  159. Barbara Saks

    WOW!! My husband and I just returned yesterday from traveling along the first half of R
    Route 66, Chicago into Texas. We got the idea to do it after seeing the movie Cars! We had an absolutely FANTASTIC time, and plan to do the other half next summer! We actually got to take pictures of both the tow-truck and fire engine that were the inspiration for the animated vehicles. In addition, we got the opportunity to speak, at length, with Dean Walker – we even got to see him turn his legs backwards!
    This website is TERRIFIC! Thanks for putting it together!

    To anybody who reads this – if you are able to do it……..
    \
    Take a trip along Route 66!

  160. Bobbie

    This movie is the greatest. It’s not only for children, my mother, 74, and I could watch this movie everyday (and almost do with grandchildren) and never get tired of it.
    Super job!!

  161. Cheri Ferrari

    Cars! The greatest movie of all time. The movie has been able to transend everything we humans experience into a vision from a car’s point of view.kind using those same emotions.How good (and smart) to include mentions of Ferrari. Grandpa would smile!

    When is Cars Again, the second movie coming out. I feel a little like Luigi… more Ferrari, please.

  162. Steph Mineart

    Awesome guide -we got to see lots of these sites on our trip, and loved seeing their corresponding icons in the movie. Dawn Welch is a really amazing woman, BTW. She stopped and talked to us for a long time about going to the movie premiere, and her philosophy of life and raising her daughters to treat themselves with respect. Much to admire in her.

  163. Grant Skeggs

    Inspirational! I want to come to the USA and experience the ‘mother road’ and its fantastic history, scenary and lights!

    See you soon!

  164. Chhavi

    Too Good! I came to Grand Canyon, AZ two years back and hit the Williams town on my way. I also travelled from AZ to LA and on my way saw a lot may bords of Route 66. At that point in time, i wasn’t aware of what is this Route 66. Actually i am from India and wasnt familiar of thsi route. I wondered about ti for few minutes and then it went off from my memory. By chance, this year, only yesterday i sw the movie “Cars”. Well made movie and a great eye opener for those who are not well aware of the historic route 66. After watching that movie, i became curious to know about Route 66 and its history. The first thing i did next morning is googled and read through its histroy. I just happen to come to your blog and read through it. Its just amazing and full of knowledge about the cars and their counterparts in real life :) Really helpful blog and well written. I simply loved it…Thanks for it :)

  165. Riza, Philippines

    great! my kid and i watched over and over the movie. we just love it. even if we’re not familiar with route 66 coz we are living oiutside the US, your article makes us feel that we “know” and felt ” we travelled” at route 66.

  166. Jenn

    We just did Rt 66 and saw alot of this stuff, but while we were watching the movie AGAIN, last night, it looks like the courthouse/red’s garage is done after the abandoned Coliseum Ball Room in Illinois. Looks almost identical. The windows are different, but the shape & design of the building itself are the same :)

  167. Ron

    Interesting theory, Jenn. I’m not sure whether the Pixar crew ever was aware of the Coliseum, however. Their tour of the road started in Missouri and worked its way west.

  168. Kameron and Mom

    this is the all time “GREATEST” movie EVER!!! This information was really great, it would be fun to visit some of these places and compare them to the movie. Thanks

  169. Lesley McDowell, Austin TX

    Thanks for the detailed explanation of the movie Cars. My girlfriend and I love this movie and we were wondering what “Radiator Springs” represented. I can’t believe all of the responses you have been getting! Again great job and thanks for taking time for putting this all together for us to enjoy.

  170. Edward Jasek-Austin, Tx

    My grandkids and I are the biggest fans(ages 2,3,5,7,7 and 56). I just enjoy this movie and thx! you all for putting so much time into it. Everytime I watch it, two dozen times by now, I spot something different. I love the detail. Thx! again! I waiting for “Cars 2″

  171. Jerry Dornak, Goliad, Tx

    Edward stole my comment…my granddaughter (2) and I (56) just love this movie, we’re watching it again right now and I just found this site, but my wife and I travelled part of 66 on the way to Cheyenne this month to see what it’s like, and really enjoyed the views….thanks for all the comments and details about the route.

  172. Summer Tunnell

    Hey, this is wonderful. I am from Baxter Springs, KS, and this tells us what is true of what we’ve heard. It also tells us more than we thought that was on “Route 66″ and in “Radiator Springs”.
    Again.. It’s Awesome! Great job!

  173. Steven

    Harley Russell, inspiration for Tow Mater and Sandhills Curiosity Shop in Erick, Oklahoma—-ROUTE 66 MUST SEE! ! !Nothing else like it!—ANYWHERE

  174. Robin

    Like Edward and Jerry, my intro to “Cars” was my grandson, age 27 months. I saw the beginning and middle about 5 times – but never the end! Had to actually rent it at home to see “what happened.”

    Love this site! You’re absolutely right about driving down Central in Albuquerque – it’s the ONLY way to see Albuq!

    Robin, formerly of Roswell

  175. Dave Cole

    I drove from middle Tennessee westward earlier this spring and was fascinated by the history of route 66. as often as possible we would get off of i40 and drive on old route 66
    I was especially intrigued by the abandoned town of two guns at Diablo canyon just west of Winslow we stopped there and took many pictures. Near the end of your guide you have a photo of the Diablo canyon bridge stating that it is now closed. Although the bridge may be OFFICIALLY closed, it is still possible to drive across it and many people apparently do. We drove across it and spent over an hour on the other side taking photos.

  176. Cars Inspiration

    We would love to drive through route 66 one day. My family (especially my son) have watched the movie CARS numerus times. We finally searched online ROUTE ^^ and decided that we will one day take a vacation and drive through the Historic Mother Road. We have read about the inspriations for the Pixar film and are awaiting our vacation.

  177. christian richardson

    Do you know what i like cars movie very it is so funning. my favorties very car on the movie is lighting mcqueen he is so funning. i like the sound of lighting mcqueen horsepower it is so lounding. He get on that race he run so fast.Than he horsepower the nascar race track and he save that other car that is cool.

  178. sarah huntington

    my favorite chartactors from cars is lightning mcqueen he is so cool and funny lightning mcqueen make me laugh did somebody say funny and my name is sarah

  179. Pete

    Been traveling the Mother Road east from Kingman to Amarillo and have seen a number of the items used in the movie. We are camped in Tucumcari at the moment and looking directly at Radiator Mountain. Great site and a pleasure to use in re-tracing our trip. Thanks!

  180. mike

    dude see the movie and you will understand about the route and bring the route back and all the old cars and the fasion come make us show!!

  181. Abbie

    Just got back from Route 66 Road trip from Victorville Ca into Arizona and at the Sno Cap Cafe behind the cafe itself is where you see all the old cars with eyes painted on their windshields thats in Seligman.And the Sitgreaves Pass comming out of Oatman is an old gas station in cool springs that might have once had a wagon wheel motel by it at one time. Also when I stayed at the Quality Inn in Kingman Arizona I slept in the same room that Mike Wallace stayed in when he was promoting his Route 66 book .On the outside of the door it said Mike Wallace slept here and on the inside it had pictures of him in his corvette on Route 66 my favorite place on Route 66 was Oatman what a neat place I could have spent hours there if we weren’t going to the Grand canyon the burro’s were great can you imagine a 9 day old baby out on the road with its mom and all the other 15 Burro’s and seeing the old hotel with all the dollar bills on the walls about 30,000 so far and seeing the Clark Gable honeymoon suite there,And seeing the towns ghost Oaties suite in the same hotel.This was the best vacation and birthday that I have had so far I love everything about the mother road can’t wait to see more I met two people in a 67 corvette that was painted like an american flag that were getting ready to film that part of 66 from Flagstaff to Oatman they were going to start filming at the old muesuem resturant and continue on 66 all the way to Oatman and it should air on T.V on travil channel in January hopefully he looked just like Chuck Norris,so you just never know who you might run into on the mother road,and theres so much to see and take photos another favorite place was Winslow Standing on the corner which inspired the eagles hit song Take it Easy when one of the guys car broke down there and eat there at Bobos cafe outstanding prime rib sandwich.I want to go out on road to see more of 66 someday.oct.19,2007

  182. billy bond from the uk

    im 4 years old.and one I would love to drive on route 66.how do you get to route 66 and the valley mountains?

  183. Natasha Mc. Queen (14yrs)

    Cars is a great movie. . My favorite charactor has to be Lightning Mc. Queen. But all Mc. Queen cares about is winning,fame,fortune, and all the perks that come with it. But that’s all about to change when Mc. Queen gets trapped in a little old forgotten town, Raidiator Springs. There he makes alot of friends from bueatiful Sally to the beloved rusty old Mater. And they show him the racecar that he wants to be. That life isn’t about the finish line but… the journey. My favorite movie is definetly cars. I have watched cars 107 times in counting. My whole room is filled with Cars stuff; mostly Lightning Mc. Queen. Every store I go to I usually always ask for something cars. Anyway thanks for making this great movie. Im a freak for the movie and my 3 year old baby sister always walks around singing ”Real Gone” or asking to watch Lightning Mc. Queen. !!! KACHOW!!! GO CARS.

  184. timmy

    dude this movie was awesssssssssssoommmmmmmmmmmmmmeeeeeee

    its a conspiracy man the oil company whatever i cant remember lol peice!

  185. Demi Evans

    I love the movie. I am 13 years old and I livein Hartville Missouri. Mater really reminds me of my late Grandpa. He is funny sarcastic and I just love him he is my favorite character!!!!!!!!!

  186. Anonymous

    Hey Cars fans!
    I just found this site! It’s loaded with interesting tidbits. I live in Kingman, AZ and I get to drive the motheroad every day. Come visit the beautiful 66, you won’t regret it.
    KellyT – formerly a Sandiegan.

  187. Laurie GArth

    G’day

    I live in Australia and I drove route 66 in 2005

    Re the tyres around the Pole.

    I came across a pole that had tyres lobbed over it as in the CARS flick. I believe it was in Tulsa but I may be wrong (re the location not the pole).

    I also have a photo of an old garage and tow truck that is like mater.

    I can email the photos if I had you direct emai; address/

    Laurie Garth
    Caboolture 4510
    Near Brisbane
    Queensland
    Australia

  188. Kitty

    I have a 3 year old son who loves Cars, so I’ve seen it many, many times. I always felt that they captured Route 66 and the Southwest so beautifully, especially the scene at sunset when Radiator Springs lights up its neon signs for the first time since its heyday. I grew up 2 blocks from Central Ave in Albuquerque, and now live in Pasadena, CA, so the Mother Road is part of my DNA. We just drove back from Albuquerque after the holidays and stopped in Holbrooke to show our son “the Cozy Cone,” but someday we’d like to do the whole trip. Now we know where to go! Thanks for doing such a fantastic job pointing out all the inspirations for the movie’s visuals.

  189. carlos

    my brother loves cars as well we see the movie three times a day and ive always wondered what is so special about route 66. I used to live in Dallas,Texas but never new there was a route 66 until i got to miami and saw the movie

  190. Wallace Slattery

    My folks took us kids along Rt. 66 in 1951 and ’54, and it was very much as shown in the reminiscences in the film – interesting. A lot of emphasis on cowboys and Indians. And a few years ago I took in parts of it around Peach Springs and down to Sedona with them again.
    When my grandsons wanted to watch Cars with me, I figured it would be a stupid Nascar racing cartoon. Was I wrong! Now I’m as hooked as the rest of you. I do hope there is a second Cars movie.
    Incidentally, I live in the Black Hills of South Dakota, and one of my favorite pastimes is visiting ghost towns in those beautiful hills – there are 500 of them. And Arizona has excellent ghost towns scattered around – all worth visiting.

  191. Mark

    My wife and I are going on the mother road this summer on our motorcycles. It will be our first real vacation ever. No family to visit or any thing like that. We are taking our 7 year old son with us and we were looking for a way for him to enjoy it. Mission accomplished!!!
    This is a great site. I am looking forward to starting a site and doing a pictoral of the trip. See you on the mother road Mark

  192. Alex

    I´m Alex from Slovakia and I love r66, because it is the biggest dream for me. Harley-Davidson, r66 and me… THE CARS open my eyes for freedom and spice of life. Thanks…

  193. mater fan

    greetings from guatemal central america,
    i wish i could go one day to ride on the mother road
    cars movie is great but isnt that great as the real route and towns around it
    congratulations you guys for this web site, it just rocks!!!

  194. Anonymous

    I’m so glad to have found this site! It comfirmed my suspicion about Ramone’s body-art shop! The first time I saw Cars, I was drawn to the familiararity of the building, as if I knew I’d seen it many times before. When I read the building was directly inspired by the old Conoco in Shamrock, TX, the light-bulb came on! My dad lived about 20 miles from the town all my life, and I drove past the gas station several times a year going to visit him. It was like seeing a piece of my childhood memories across the big screen.

  195. gulombon

    i am from kelantan, malaysia
    my son love the movie ‘cars’, he is 4 yrs old, i think he watched the movie more then 4-5 dozen times, he always ask me about the kinds of cars in the movie… and this site is very informative… and when my son wakes up tomorow… i will read this site to him… thank you very much… great work… i hope one day my son and i will have the opportunity to visit route 66

  196. Anonymous

    We are currently watching CARS with our 2 1/2 year old daughter for the 1000th time! This site is very interesting … some day we hope to vacation through route 66 and see some of those sites! We actually live by the Leaning Tower in Niles … I don’t know, that might be a stretch!!!

  197. Anonymous

    OMG!! I live in the Chicago area (and I know where that leaning tower in Niles is…!!!) and I’ve watched the movie Cars and unmentionable amount of times as it is my daughter’s FAVORITE flick! I’ve always heard about route 66, but never really, I guess, got it. I really hope to one day travel the Mother Road and stop at all the little places along the way! And the similarities between the movie and the real places are just mind blowing! :0)

  198. Wulfette Noire

    This is such a wonderful site. I have been really wanting to go down Route 66 ever since I did my studies in the US – unfortunately, work and studies and vacation doesn’t mix. I am now working in France and am waiting for my 2 year old son to be old enough so we can take a long vacation down Route 66! He has been watching Cars about 30 times now… he made me pay more details to the movie and fell in love more and more with both the movie and the real Route 66 itself!

  199. Susan Robson

    THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU! Our family has been in love with “Cars” for a long time now. Our 6 year old daughter likes it so much, she has asked us to vacation on Route 66 this year. She even has a large plastic jar bank that we all put our change into just for the trip. She decorated it with Route 66 symbols! We are in the planning stages for this trip, and this site is a HUGE help for us. Wonderful work!

  200. Brian

    Great site and great movie. My 2 year old can not get enough of “Cars.”
    Will be taking a trip along Route 66, sometime in the future.
    My wife and I have travelled along US 89 Alternate in Arizoa. A beautiful drive through the Vermillion Cliffs in Northern Arizona.

  201. Ellen

    I really enjoyed this site. I grew up in Tucumcari and from the first time I saw the movie it reminded me of where I grew up. I have to agree, Tucumcari is much like Radiator Springs

  202. Kenny&Teresea

    WOW. Just watched the Cars Movie with my wife and a Friend on my new 10 ft X20 ft outdoor screen. It Was about the 5th or 6th time to watch it. Me and my wife did the Route 66 run about three years ago in out 1934 Chevy. We had a blast. The trip is decopaged on my theater room wall and everyone that comes over gets a big kick out of it. This movie has even made the trip more unique. We have 90% of these scenes on our wall and point then out to others that watch.We notice something else each time we watch it. This movie is great and anyone wanting to make the Rt 66 run. IT IS WORTH IT.Again this movie even makes it better

  203. justin bailey

    Hello, I have grandson ,and justin lee bailey love it ,he watching the movie all day, and for him that is somethings , he has not done that with no movie before.he love mater , he go to sleep with mater , and take abath with cars toys for bath and cars bath soap and razor . thank you so much for this movie for my grandson. justin lee bailey .
    my grandson is 3years old .

  204. Bright Eyed

    We just did our cross country journey. Florida to California. Via Route 66 for as much as we could. It was amazing and because of this post we were able to plan our trip around seeing some amazing sights from Cars (as well as the gorgeous country). Thanks again!

  205. Vicki

    I am planning a Route 66 for this summer. I caught the last half of Cars today, and watched, mesmerized, even thought I’ve seen it multiple times. I kept thinking, we’re going to see this! We’re planning to stay at the Cozy C…I mean Wigwam Village, and I jumped up and down with joy seeing the Cozy Cone Motel in the movie. I’ve been scouring the web for all the cool places to visit, and thanks to your site, I have even more to add to the itinerary. I especially love the connections to the real people who influenced the movie. Thanks for all the effort and love that went into this.

  206. Randy

    What about the Fire Truck Red! Well it sit outside the Grand Canyon Caverns in Arizona. Stop by and see and get some great pics to remember.

  207. Arne, Denmark, Scandinavia

    Great job! After seeing “Cars” my wife and I searched the internet for information about Route 66 and got so inspired by your website (and links) that we just have decided to travel Route 66 whenever we take the trip to the USA.
    Keep up the good work!

  208. vishakha

    amazing n fantastic movie . i n my brother have seen this movie so many times but still we feel interesting while watching another time.Good Work

  209. Jerald

    This was wonderful!!!!!!!!!My son is about to turn two and we are fortunate enough to see “cars” about 6 times a day(literally and I still catch myself sitting there watching it with him) I got to thinking we are do for a road trip- why not see how far we can take it! I will keep you updated to how it turns out. thank you for the insperation!

  210. Minerva

    Radiator Springs may be a made up place, but there are only so many places where it could be located. If you look at the end of the movie, they have a map. On that map it shows where Highway 40 intersects with Route 66. Radiator Springs is located a very short distance away from the exit on Highway 40. Also, look at the way the roads run together on the map. I looked only at Arizona because of the cactus in the movie (saguaro cactus only grow in that part of the world). Which would make the little town a just west of Flagstaff, if I made my calculations right that is.

  211. cata eco

    3 times per day since december 2007 – my son watches the film. everytime is brand new. i,ve to travell more than 8000kms to reach the mother road but i’ll do this asap

  212. Chet

    This movie was presented to me, a senior citizen, by my 22 year old GF and her two children. Every time we watch it, I see something new. I loved it. We drove over to San Diego’s Hotel Del for Memorial Day weekend and on the way back through Wellton, AZ, on Interstate 8, we all agreed that the mountains looked like Radiator Springs. The Wigwam Motels were started by a man in Glasgow, KY, near my home town.

  213. Evan and his Mom

    While driving from Texas to California, I wanted my son to experience Route 66. He knows about it beacuse we sing the song, so every time we drove into a city named in the song, we would stop and sing. But the places we stopped were all on Route 40, so I decided to take exit 139 along old Route 66 into Seligman. The first thing I noticed were the Burma-Shave signs – reproductions of the famous 30’s-50’s era ones. I had never seen Seligman before, but I was immediately struck by the resemblence to Radiator Springs; this was before we actually entered the town, but were out on the outskirts near the tire yard. I had no idea that Seligman was featured in ‘Cars’ until I began talking to the residents and met Angel in the Route 66 store. While we enjoyed looking at all the fun stuff in Tucumcari, I would suggest a trip to Seligman to get the feel of a town bypassed by the highway like Radiator Springs. Try to time your visit after 11:00 a.m.though; there were 4 tour buses full of people when we first arrived which rather spoils the ‘deserted town’ effect. Both towns are a lot of fun to visit! Thanks for a great blogsite.

  214. jim

    Tow Mater sits in a car lot on Route 66 in Kingman. He was along side Route 66 in town during the Fun Run a few weekends ago. ‘d like to see more “Cars” cars in the fun run!

  215. Samy_joe

    I luv cars but i am a big fan fan of all movies bassicly my fav character would have 2 b mater or sarge!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! so thats y cars is like the best movie ever made an i have likee 60 different cars toys

  216. Yoyok

    Hello, I’m from Buitenzorg (Bogor, Indonesia) have you visited my colorful city? There are many planty from whole a world in a park, and it’s called Kebun Raya.

    My son, Dipo, has a fovourite cars star, Mc Queen. But i very love Matter. He loooks funy and more friendly.

  217. Martin

    On the DVD of Cars. In the bonus material, it is said the team behind the film saw a documentary, on towns, bypassed by the interstate highway. Does anybody know the name of this documentary?

  218. Shellee Graham

    Hello my Rt 66 brothers and sisters —

    Just wanted to add my 2 cents here. When I first learned about “CARS,” before it was in theaters — I always felt that the Cozy Cone Motel was a nod to the departed CORAL COURT MOTEL, formerly of St. Louis, Missouri. In fact, I was very excited when I heard the name Cozy Cone — I thought the Pixar folks would add a little Streamline Moderne Deco styling, but it didn’t happen. But hey, I’m a little biased about that “no-tell motel with a touch of class.” :-)

  219. C.

    To me, the Cozy Cone Motel sign looks an awful lot like the former Sahara Sands Motel sign in Tucumcari, New Mexico, in terms of its coloring, the word “MOTEL” in brown, the angle of the supporting beams, and even the placement of the “100% Refrigerated Air” sign. (Of course, the latter slogan comes directly from the Blue Swallow.)

    “Cars” is a movie deserving of a frame-by-frame analysis to find all of the Route 66 references. I almost jumped out of my seat when I spotted Budville.

  220. Jo Dawna

    Saw CARS for the 1st time last night. . .what a ‘cute’ movie!!! Being from Oklahoma and travelling to California as a child on Route 66, many things looked familiar. I saw where someone asked about the statue of Stanley. Long ago the Stanley Steamer was a steam driven car, in Estes Park, Colorado the old Stanley Hotel has several on display. I think the statue was to honor the Stanley Steamer! I heard a Cars II is in the making, hope so!!!

  221. Pablo Marquez

    Hi , My name is Pablo Marquez, I had been hearing about the The Cars movie for long time, but I’d just wait to see it until my baby boy born, and when he had 1.5 years old, I don’t remember.exacly -December..in a cool day he and me did watch the movie in the house …I remember that my baby can not still talk..and just said ‘catn’, ‘catn’.. he only can say ‘catn’..to all cars, to mc queen, to mater, to ramone, to the police…to luigi,,,to all.

    Now , he has 2years,3months age and can say Mc.Queen,,,Mater,,,just Mate…these are his favorites cars….so he has the squeze colection cars,,…and minimum once a week he want to see the movie, he enjoy the movie every he see it , and me too.

    We live in Mexico, in the border with Mc.Allen Texas, and I hope that some day can travel by the Route 66, and show this places to my son….It was , is and will be one of the most favorites movies for Isai (my son) and me.

  222. Brian T. Egdahl

    Hey this site is AWESOME!! My sons favorite movie and the one he wants to watch every morning is “CARS”. Because of this I thought it would be cool to look up and see where the movie makers got thier inspiration. Thanks guys for doing this site I now want to learn more about ROUTE 66.

  223. Kay Pflueger

    Just returned home from a Route 66 trip from AZ to St Louis. Had not seen the movie “Cars” until after the trip but what a great way to end the trip. I was able to re-live the adventure while watching the movie. Thanks for this “guide” to the movie and for keeping the “Mother Road” alive!

  224. R Barnard

    We’re headed from MI to CA to take our eldest daughter to college. This is likely our last chance as a family to take that Great American Road Trip. The movie “Cars” has helped make the idea of stopping at non-national brand business interesting for my kids. Your work on this site will help make it fun to match the actuals with items in the movie.

    Thank you!

  225. K. Bolen

    Thanks for the info on the movie ‘Cars”. When I first saw it I saw references to different things and places on Rt 66. Next year we are planning a drive on The Mother Road and I know we will plan on visiting these places.

  226. DEBBIE from ENGLAND, UK

    My mum (age 68) phoned me yesterday to tell me she had just seen the movie CARS with two little girls and it was MY MUM who was really into the movie! So I had to watch it too as we had been on Route 66 in July 2007. Then I found your site because I was so interested to find out about all the places in the movie. We stayed in a wigwam at the WigWam Motel in Holbrook – in the wigwam that looks onto the wigwam office just like in the movie. We ate at Joe & Aggies Cafe in Holbrook (the best). We also stopped over in Williams Arizona and also Seligman (the Delgadillo’s of Seligman are in the credits). Then we travelled along to Peach Springs. We went to Bryce Canyon where we drove through the arch formation in the rock. So much in the movie was just like the places we visited in Arizona, Canyon De Chelley, Bryce, Grand Canyon, Vermillion Cliffs. I have the photo’s. Hey, someone mentioned Cow Tipping – look at “How To Cow Tip” on YouTube ha ha. Thanks for your GREAT site. Debbie, England UK

  227. Don

    I must confess- I never saw the movie, “Cars”, but I am planning to as soon as possible. I knew of Route 66, but only have been on a small part of it in my life. Im sure that the Lost Dogs Tour coming up next month has helped to make me more knowlegable about Route 66. Don’t know what the Lost Dog Glory Road Tour is all about? For more information, please go to http://www.myspace.com/thelostdogsmusic

  228. Santhosh

    Thanks for the wonderful article!!! I had the great opputunity to drive from Kingman to Seligman through 66 last week. A lot of people told me to skip this and take I-40. I refused and am glad that I took this route. I stopped at many places and it was very worth while to spend sometime meeting the locals at Peach Springs, AZ

  229. Lis Lopez

    ayer llegue de Las Vegas y viaje por la ruta 66 el pasado miercoles, fui una experiencia buena, el viaje es un poco largo ya que ibamos para el Gran Cañon, pero conocimos gente muy amable, estuvimos en Kingman y nos detuvimos a comer en Seligman donde tienen un area que tienen unos carros muy parecidos a los de la pelicula Cars con sus ojos y todo! fui con mi hijo de 2 años q es locura con Cars y el estaba fascinado.

  230. Californiagrl95

    i liked it alot….the pictures are ALL baya or beutiful!!! it makes me see the real meaning of the movie. R.Springs is just a little lost town in the movie…..a realy cute lost town….i see why disney and pixar picked it.

  231. Derron

    hey thanks for the info i was trying to figure it all out next summer i am gonna take a drive i live in las vegas nv and seeing how my son loves the movie so much i want to take him on it. so thats our plan for next summer. i am starting to get it all mapped out to take the trip so thank you for your info and have a great day.

  232. @MB3R

    this website helped me alot with my homework and i really didn’t know alot of stuff like this. its very amazing how the people look the same as the cars in the movie. The pictures are awsome and really am looking forward to show this to other friends! well,have a nice day.

  233. Marcio

    Parabéns, com certeza é um dos melhores filmes feitos até hoje
    pela pixar, fico adimirado com a riqueza de detalhes mostrado no
    filme….Fico aguardando anciosamente o segundo filme, que já está
    demorando.

  234. Sharon Miller

    This was an awesome site and very informative. I really enjoyed making the connection with the characters of the movie and places and hope to see more sites that provide facts like this one did. Next road trip will definitely have to be along Route 66.

  235. Marv Miller

    Really have to agree with you about Tucumcari as still being representative of the flavor of Route 66 in its heyday. A close second might be Grants, NM. Enjoyed your site.

    1. turtle mama

      I was in Grants for the first time recently, and without any knowledge of this site, and of course after having seen the movie at the drive-in when it came out, my hair stood on end as we drove slowly up Rte 66. My co-travelers and I all looked at each other, and almost simultaneously said, “WOW, did we just step onto the Disney-Pixar set for Cars?!!” I’m glad my first trip down Rte. 66 began in Grants, NM.

  236. AP

    Great site! I have a question: is there any old town along R66 that´s more like a ghost town now when the new roads don´t run through there anymore?

  237. Bette Weakley

    My whole family loves Cars. Drew a mural of the the track and put up Lightning, Sally and Mater in my son’s room and we all love it. Still watch it regularly and for every road trip we take. I’m planning out a trip on Route 66 in March and am so glad to have found this site. Thank you.

  238. Brenda

    One of the greatest things I see coming from the movie cars is its attention it is giving to the kids. One day it may be many of these kids who restore some of the towns by-pasted by todays rush of the highways.

  239. Linda

    My grandchildren watch “Cars” every day and generally more that once since they have no TV at the moment, its a great movie and I see new things just about every time I see it, I would love to explore Rt66 some day it was very popular when I was a teenager but thats been many many years ago. :0)

  240. TBK

    Thank you so much for this! My 2-year-old son is addicted to “Cars” and after watching it for the 20th time, my husband and I decided we had to take a trip on Route 66, something I haven’t done since my grandparents took me as a teenager. I hope the towns and businesses have enjoyed renewed interest not only from the film, but also from your website. Thanks again!

  241. Rosa Rodriguez

    With my grandson I wathed this movie and he asked my if the towns were really so I showed him your website and he now wants to go and see were Cars was filmed.
    Thanks! =]

  242. Dane Tarantelli

    Great Job on the website. Our Family watched this movie many times and did travel all of Route 66 right before it came out. This helped us piece it all together! Thanks!

  243. CMK

    My family and I have been planning a trip on Route 66 since CARS came out and we watched the “Making of” section on our DVD. This web site will make it more of a CARS trip for my 6 and 3 yr old.

    Thanks

  244. JDawg

    I was in Shamrock this weekend and really enjoyed seeing Ramone’s shop. It was really interesting and my boys really liked seeing it also.

  245. Anonymous

    Really interesting, I am rewatching Cars on Disney right now…your website answered all of my questions and more! Nice work!

  246. Leno

    I just watched Cars for the fist time and I am one who reads the credits as they roll at the end of the movie. They mention “Elvis” in the credits. I didn’t see or hear anyone or anything that resembled Elvis? Is this a disclaimer in the event that a viewer claims to have “seen” Elvis while watching the movie?

  247. julian

    I like car movie. Its very much interesting and its hard to forget the sentimental history of the route 66. even my children they love to see the movie. Infact 3x time a day they’re watching movie. We do hope that there will be another movie, about route 66.

  248. Ivan Puckett

    Luigi’s tire store appears to be inspired by a garage located in Walsenberg, CO.

    Give me an email address and I’ll send you a picture

  249. Emily

    Leno, watch the sequence at the NASCAR race when Sheryl Crow is singing “Real Gone.” In one part of that sequence, you will see an RV designed to look like Elvis.

  250. █ Metalica 4 life █

    cars is an awesome movie
    █ ▌I loved the GREAT Movie ▌█
    If you haven’t seen it then you don’t know what your missing out on

    Like I said you have got to see it!!

    Plus this is a lot of info so thanks a bunch 4 that too

    The movie is realistic but cartoony at the same time 8^
    GO SEE THE MOVIE
    Even if you have already seen it go see it again

    THANKS 4 THE INFO TOO

  251. Penny Black

    I drive thru Glenrio on every Route 66 trip. I love the little “Cookie Cutter” Valentine restaurant. I take pictures each trip to see how much the hungry elements have devoured. I have always wondered about the name & now thanks to you folks I have one to label my pics.
    Thank you for the movie & keepin’ the heart of “The Mother Road” pumpin’.

  252. Road Traveler

    I always wanted to take a trip to the US and drive my way across the former Route 66… Since I have no money, I keep watching movies about it. And this is a great way to make myself feel there.

    Great idea that they made this movie…
    Same opinion about this blog :D

  253. Vic

    Today I saw the movie for second time and once again it make me travel thru it from my living room. But is the first time That I tried to find out more information by internet and I found this page….And let me tell you something, Is GREAT!!!.I will look forward to in future take a trip by route 66. Since I’m from Mexico it is a “must” to me now.
    Thanks for the info, again is awesome!!

  254. Anonymous

    watch the end credits of the movie and you will see it mentions Baxter Springs. The ghost light is close by too

  255. shred

    Thanks for the info. I wished I’d read it before I took an unplanned trip down part of Route 66 late last year. It’s great to see that the film has stirred so much interest in Route 66. Get out there and get your kicks, while you still can.

  256. Ted

    I visited the Mother Road back in 2002 and in Jun 2009. The story is true. I took a lot of pictures of the surrounding areas. It was gorgeous but deserted.

  257. Anonymous

    We just stayed in Tucumcari and it was so evident the town inspired aspects of “Cars.” So sad, too, to know the Mother Road is slowly disappearing … 29 Palams base is overtaking a huge segment of the old Route 66 … no more shoe tree, I guess.

  258. AZKID

    Just west of chief yellowhorse at the AZ/NM border, is a red-rock-encircled valley comprising Houck AZ that to me IS radiator springs. Furthermore, the short drive up into the pine trees from Houck to WindowRock is a perfect analog for McQueen’s/Sally’s drive into the moutains…

  259. Santiago

    I’m from Puerto Rico but in the first opportunity I’ll be there. Read your commentaries invites me to enjoy Route 66. The Cars movie invites me to. I know that its a wondwefull trip.

  260. j.lou

    I am hoping that there will be a second edition of the cars…Philippines love it so much so as the young and the old.. I am also hoping that through this movie (THE CAR), everyone would realize how values can have revolutionary consequences for human life.

  261. Kenneth Ramos

    Just like most people that had wrotte comments i have a 18 months old baby boy and he love the movie and so do I and I’m glad to found out all of this imformantion about the movie and Route 66 maybe one day when he get’s a little bit older we can both take a little road trip and pass by the town for a little History to the pass. “Good Job Pixar”

  262. Clarissa from Germany, Berlin

    I visited Route 66 in mai 2005. Today I’ve seen the movie cars with my son, 4 years old. Now, I would like to know, if Radiator Springs really exists and I found your great article. Thanks for it. I’ll come back with my two sons in two years. When we close our eyes, we can feel it like real. Greatings from Germany, Berlin

  263. Darrell Briggs aka The Janitor

    I am hosting a Halloween Party on Historic Route 66 at the old Rose Bowl located in Tulsa, Oklahoma. I would like to invite all of you to this adult-themed costume party. We have two live bands and a DJ that will spin your favorite road trip music from 7pm when the doors open until ???
    Many of our guests grew up along the Mother Road and will be available to tell you half-truths about what occurred along the Highway of American History. Expect to see lots of Harley-Davidson motorcyles and traditional American Muscle Cars at this event.
    I am the Janitor of Oklahoma Biker the Riders Ragazine. I look forward to seeing many of you there!

  264. James Rowe

    What a great movie, I am 6 and never get tired of watching it. I asked my mum if Radiator Springs was a real place in America, so we looked it up. Obviously not, but we now know the movie was based on real knowledge of the local area. I hope there is a sequel. Love to visit the USA one day and travel along route 66.
    James, Australia.

  265. Sgt. Bilko

    As a resident of the southwest, and having been to Seligman and Tucamcari both many times, I would rank Seligman, Arizona up with Tucamcari as to topogrpahy and geology in that town that seem familiar when watching the film. While Tucamcari has Tucumcari Peak, it does not have the typical Colorado Plateau type topography and rocks seen in the drives around and just outside of Radiator Springs in the film.

    It seems to me that the fictional Radiator Springs itself is an analogue of Tucamari’s kitsch and sights, and Seligman’s geographic location.

    Nice summary page and good info here! I have referred it to friends.

  266. J. Quintero F.

    Dear Sirs
    It is amazing that the “fictional radiator Spring” exist in 66 route on those nice little desert towns….
    The people of those towns must be very proud of that….in living a quiet king of life.

  267. Ide & Jorgen Gullestrup

    We have been watching the movie with our grandson who is 2½ years old. And several clips on Youtube.

    We will be driving the Route 66 in March 2010.

    Though we had found a lot of information about Route 66, this site is especially valuable for “Cars”-fans.

    Thank you.

  268. Marcelo G.

    Disculpen que no escriba en ingles!
    vimos Cars con mi hijo y es la mejor pelicula animada que he visto!
    Es excelente!
    Solo me acercaba por aqui para decirle que Radiator Springs quizas no existe como tal, pero Peach Springs en Arizona ocupa ese lugar tal cual como aparece RD en el mapa de Cars!
    Fijense que incluso existe esa desviacion de la 66 a partir de la 40 igual como el mapa de Cars!
    Desde ya gracias por permitirme opinar!
    Esperamos con mi hijo ansiosos la segunda parte!

  269. Drew

    This is a great website. Whoever created it put some work into this. But don’t get to rigid about the scenes in the movie being along the route 66. For instance, the scenery around Radiator Springs, particularly the rock ridge with rock formations tilting towards 2 o’clock. It might be Caddilac Ranch in Amarillo. But drive I-70 west out of Green River, Utah and you drive through rock formations strikingly similar to those in the movie. Most of all, I think it’s the experience of driving across the country, regardless which route you take, that gives you the excileration of seeing new places and meeting the people there.

  270. Marcelo G.

    They excuse that it does not write in English! we saw Cars with my son and is the best animated film than I have seen! He is excellent! It only approached to me this way to say to him perhaps that Radiator Springs does not exist like so, but Peach Springs in Arizona occupies that place so what as appears RD in the map of Cars! Look that even exists that deviation of the 66 from the 40 equal like the map of Cars! From already thanks to allow me to think! We wait for with my son anxious the second part!

  271. Kev

    I think this is great. I did Route 66 in 2008 & so far it was the best trip of my life. Reading this brings back memories of the trip.
    It’s good to see where Pixar got their inspiration from.

  272. karl

    thanks for write this article. Soy mexicana pero amo esta pelicula de “cars” y me hizo interesarme mas en esta ruta ya que vivo en frontera con arizona y al viajar por estados unidos me a tocado pasar por areas de la historica route 66 pero ahora que lei esta guia deseo tener mi propio recorrido por la historica ruta 66.

  273. Beth

    Wonderful job done on this blog. I plan to drive the Mother Road in March 2010 and am thankful for such a great blog as research! Thanks

  274. Kathy Blickenstaff

    My grandson loved your movie and would climb into my lap, during the drive and waterfall part, then wispier in my ear ‘can we will go there sometime grandma’ he was 4 at the time. I am sad to know that there isn’t a bridge under a waterfall ‘from the movie’ that I can take him to.

  275. Ide & Jorgen Gullestrup

    We will be driving Route 66 from March 4th to March 23rd. Maybe we will meet Beth. (447)

    We have the same experience as Kathy Blickenstaff (448) with our grandson Noah – 2 years. We have been watching the movie and Youtube-clips for hours.

  276. Nkuebe Lerotholi

    Hi!!! My name is Nkuebe Lerotholi from Lesotho, jst wana congradulate u guys for a gud movie, it is so real…I really would love to visit route 66 too.

  277. Kim Ganier

    Thank goodness for “Cars” and for this website! We drove from Los Angeles to Chicago this past summer with 3 children: 4 years, 3 yrs, and 1 yr old. So every few hundred miles we could coordinate with our map and go off 40 to 66 and visit “Radiator Springs” again and again and again and again. The kids dont have a real concept of distance so they kept thinking we were back in Radiator Springs but seeing a different part of it. They enjoyed it so much, they still ask when are we going to Radiator Springs again! The big trip will be in May this year and we look forward to seeing Harley & Annabelle!!!

  278. douwe

    If you look at the end of the movie, they have a map. On that map it shows where Highway 40 intersects with Route 66. Radiator Springs is located a very short distance away from the exit on Highway 40. Also, look at the way the roads run together on the map. I looked only at Arizona because of the cactus in the movie (saguaro cactus only grow in that part of the world). Which would make the little town a just west of Flagstaff, if I made my calculations right that is.,Thank You, Look that even exists that deviation of the 66 from the 40 equal like the map of Cars!

    Gr, D

  279. Jesus Garcia Mexico

    Hola:

    Los paisajes que muestra la caricatura de los cars se ven muy hermosos sobre todo la cascada mi hijo la ve todos los dias por que le gusta mucho me gustaria en un tiempo no muy lejano conoserlo y de igual manera alos personajes reales bueno sigan cuidando a Radiador Springs que siga igual de hermoso.

    Gracias……

  280. seba

    hey great things!!!! photo and movie are the same…my apologise to pixar and all the other people….great jobs. i want to visits all the place with my baby ginevra 4 yo because is a great fun of “cars”….and mee too….
    ciao Seba from milano italy

  281. Sue

    On your travels, please stop by Angels on the Route, in Baxter Springs, Ks. Here you will see Dean “carzy legs” Walker having a Coke nearly every day. He really does turn both of his legs backwards. We also have a pocket angel buried in our cement just outside the door, so as you enter, you cross directly over it. That is why we call our shop “Angels on the Route”, because we believe in guardian angels to protect you on your journey. By the way, we were voted the best sandwich in Cherokee County and make the best frozen custard on Route 66.

  282. Nishant

    Great stuff!! Thanks for the post. I absolutely enjoyed my first trip from Chicago upto Barstow. Looking forward to another trip.

  283. Nancy

    please also send this page to me and any free items such as travel guides, etc. (on how to get them free) for route 66.

  284. Jeff Lubyk

    Cars is a Movie that makes me cry cause the Story of Route 66 is a perfect example of the way we are changing the way of life and how good things put to rest and forgoten are not a good thing and it makes me think with such fast moving life it wont be long before real Love is forgoten cause today I see people getting Married because of what someone does and what they have, now the question I have is what happend to marrying because we loved one another and nothing else mattered… well the story of Route 66 is alot like that now the world wonders ware it went and they wonder that cause they had an experiance that cant be forgoten… if I could have any dream it would be to destroy all the crap that recked it and put it back to the way it was and you know what ive never seen a streach of the route or anything like that but I know their is a reason that its a part of history and why it is missed… I can tell you that the reconstrucsion of it would be a turning point in human history it will never happen but if it ever did it would be a miricle and a saviour to the way of life…

  285. kim

    sme hear i cry wen the sad parts are on i recon it is 2 true love is not just for fun true love is a pashion kind of love love is not stuped love is romantic because it is love i hate seeing people breake up of devorsed aka split up don’t u some times cars is funny sometimes it is sad cars is part of my life i am a car i am a horse i am anything i want to be because i am on cars

  286. Laurie

    For the past 7 years my husband and I have traveled West by car at least once a year. We often detoured off the interstates to take Rte 66 to see the old towns, something we both enjoy. It is truly sad to see, what were surely charming little towns struggling for survival if not all but dead. We watched the movie Cars with our Granddaughter not knowing what the movie was about and we were delighted to see the West so beautifully depicted as only Disney can do. However, people who have not traveled West most likely do not realize the very truthful nature of the story. If the movie has inspired you to have a mind to motor West, travel my way, take the highway thats the best, get your kicks on Route 66. I quote. Don,t be in such a hurry to get there, where ever there might be, get off the beaten path and have a look around, you just might be amazed.

  287. Cris & Joe

    Thank you for a so good information. We just arrived 2 weeks ago from the Mother Road Route 66 on Harleys. It’s so nice when you arrive somewhere or see something that was inspiration for the movie!! Incredible experience and always remembering CARS!!!
    Cris & Joe
    España

  288. Frank E. Dworning

    Took the trip from Cleveland Ohio to Santa Monica Beach! Went North to Sequoia National Park then down to Vegas. Headed East on I70 Took in many attractions and had a great time. 15 days, 7K + Miles. Can’t wait to do it Again!

  289. J.R.

    Hey you, from the U.S.A colorado,nevada an other states.
    I´m from Germany and I found that your web-side is very good.
    I´m sorry because my english isn´t good…I´m only 12 years old.
    I hope that you all understand me.
    But your site is very good, really.
    I´m amzed..
    J.R. from Germany

  290. diego alvarez

    como estan!! soy de argentina me encantaron todas las fotagrafias y las comparaciones, nunca deje un comentario en ningun blog pero no queria dejar pasar esta oportunidad de hacerles llegar mis felicitaciones.
    Un fuerte abraso!!!
    Diego

  291. brian smith

    in 2007 took a trip with family from wis to cal took rt66 all the way meet dean walker in baxter springs ks lots of fun lots to see it was a 33day vecation thinking of going this year again

  292. Bob Scott

    Please check out the new “CARS” themed slot car track a friend and I built @ http://www.facebook.com/pages/Cruzin-Mobile-Slot-Car-Racing/153616178008282 .

    We are looking for input on a future, larger track build. All input would be appreciated.

    Please email [email protected] with comments, suggestions and just about anything :)

  293. Neon Lighting

    I love the Pixar movie especially the Cars,I really really love it!It gives me a lot of inspiration.God Bless all the staff,the producers and the directors,they really did a good job.Route 66 is the best,when I grow up,I want to plan for a vacation for myself and see it for myself the beauty of that place! All man really wanted to seek contentment but the real thing is you can find it in a place where there are people who already completes you.Most of all God is in your center!God Bless again!More Inspiring movies to come.

  294. Giulia

    5 years are gone since Cars came out and kids are still crazy for it… (hope the upcoming Cars 2 will be up to their expectations…). This page is wonderful, thank you for all the information you’ve put together – and so nicely, a very pleasant reading indeed!
    When my son is old enough to bear a journey like that, we’ll surely take advantage of your words and travel along R66 – he should be able to “understand”, too: he’s 4 and at the moment he believes there are “the real Cars” living on Route 66 far away in the USA ;-)
    Thank you and greetings from Italy!

  295. Alexander William

    Hi.
    Born 1971 in Germany, I have been to the southwestern part of the US in 1980/1987 and was amazed by the deserts and the vastness of the countryside. My parents always wanted to show me the remote “true” USA. They took me on trips that I have never forgotten.
    I still vividly remember a lunch-stop in a sleepy diner somewhere in Arizona as a 9-year old boy. I needed to go to the toilet and locked myself in a cubicle which I was later unable to get out of. After a while someone opened the door from the outside and I looked with amazement into the persons face: it was my very first and happy, confrontation with an Indian.
    It was there also where we had our very first tasting of Tabasco-sauce: 1980 in a place called Truxton.
    As a kid I always liked the trips to the US. I still remember each time crying when sitting in the plane leaving for home.

    Years have past… My interest grew towards Australia. Since 1988 I have been there 6 times and always off the beaten path.
    Years have past… World Politics didn’t help keeping my initial opinion towards the USA the same as before.

    Years have past…

    Until last week .
    When watching the comedy “Paul” about these two British guys picking-up an alien during their road-trip through the US, something switched within me.
    Something that I thought was dead.

    I felt the amazement and vastness of bygone times again.
    I remembered why I cried whilst watching “Cars” in 2006.

    Finally seeing in this blog, that even all the buldings in “Cars” have an original standing somewhere along the Mother Road, the feeling is back again.

    The feeling of wanting to feel, breathe and see it all again.

    Greetings from Germany

  296. Kathleen

    We just got back from a visit to Williams, Ariz. and, of course, the Grand Canyon. My almost-2-year-old grandson yelled, Ka-chow, Ka-chow when he saw the canyon and everytime he saw a Route 66 sign. I loved finally seeing part of Route 66 and I loved being in Williams. It’s a great little town. Your blog is very interesting and makes me want to explore more!

  297. Bryce Schill

    thanks this is great we are on route 66 right now and having a blast we just past cuba mo and saw the wagon wheel motel. thanks for making are trip even better.

  298. stef, Ireland

    so glad i stumbled upon this site!! From Ireland & I hope to travel as much of Route 66 as possible some day, my interest in Cars only really started last christmas 2010 watching it with my then 1&half year old daughter, 7months later and we’re nearly still having a daily watch of it!She knows all the songs ect!
    Love seeing all the resemblances of some famous sites of the mother road in the film, the movies keeping some of americas history alive, and telling the story to a new generation too! I think Cars 2 is a total let down, its lost the meaningfulness the 1st one had!! the firs was all about the history of route 66 and friendship, was hoping the second would be the same! one day ill make route 66 and hopefully be able to report back here about my travels!

  299. gry mafijne

    I was reading throught some of the posts and i identify them to be awfully interesting. sorry my english is not exaclty the very best. would there be anyway to transalte this into my patois, spanish. it would in reality usurp me a lot. since i could compare the english lingo to the spanish language.

  300. [email protected]

    ck a friend and I built @ http://www.facebook.com/pages/Cruzin-Mobile-Slot-Car-Racing/153616178008282 .

    We are looking for input on a future, larger track build. All input would be appreciated.

    Please email [email protected] with comments, suggestions and just afsadfasdbout anything :)

  301. Richie_Rich

    great description! i was 2 week ago on the route 66 and was always looking for inspirations for the cars movie. there are a lot of them..

  302. kfcarguy

    I traveled the Mother Road this past June. I started near Detroit on Michigan Ave. to Chicago. Picked up Route 66 to Santa Monica then onto San Diego for the Kaiser Frazer Owners’ Club International annual Convention. I drove solo in an unrestored 1951 Henry J. If there were multiple alignments on the way, I always took the oldest one. A 9-day adventure..blown out generator, lost hubcaps and a terrifying ride down the switchbacks into Oatman without much brakes. On the way, many asked if I had seen “CARS”. I did not until I came back and revel in reliving my trip thru the movie.

  303. Gir Dubray

    Ok i wanted to ask if you guys know who…in real life…who is lighting mac queen?…like really…i want to know who he is..and if it is in there…im sorry…i didn’t read it…so..blah…lmfao…

  304. @FJPalacio on Twitter

    Chimin’ in, tks to a few tweets, skimmed and now bookmarked this page, as I’m an @Pixar fan since Toy Story I! (led me to study CGI as a major, even!)… so thanks for the background in character development, that’s one of the most challenging facets for an animator, as it lends credence and believability to a story, connecting it to real places and people, as was the case with “Cars” & Route 66… Appreciated!

  305. Donna Gonzales

    Thanks for the information. We are currently driving Route 66 in Arizona. The facts you provided are very helpful!

  306. Warren

    Cool info you got here!
    Great movie!
    I guess they’ve had Radiator Springs patterned from Peach Springs rather than Baxter Springs. The topography is a dead giveaway and the town is said to be bypassed by Interstate 40.

  307. Jaime Venegas

    Great job in putting this together! If I may add, there is no Radiator Springs but there is a Radium Springs which may or may not have inlfuenced the fictional town’s name. Radium Springs is located about a good 65 miles (more or less) north of El Paso Texas (1 hour 3 mins 60.0 mi – I-10 W and I-25 N). This town is located in the state of New Mexico, north of the City of Las Cruces New Mexico. Also, the big spoked wheel place Sally and McQueen visit does exist. I just don’t remember where I’ve seen it before. Just thought I shared this with you folks!

  308. wilson terry

    i graduated from high school in yuma, az in ’64 and college in flagsaff in ’68. watched them build I-40 through flag. i loved the mother road. have driven most of it before it was desecrated. i disagreed with Ike at the time that we needed interstate roads all over the U S for transporting the military. we haven’t used them yet for that reason. i hope we never do.

    1. Ron Warnick Post author

      Actually, as the book “The Big Roads” describes, the movement of the military was never a significant consideration. The basic idea for the interstates predated Ike by many years, and was seen simply as the next most-logical step in highway improvements.

  309. Lou Perez

    Just completed a trip down Route 66 from Winslow Arizona to Oatman Arizona and kept the movie cars in mind the entire way. While some of the idea’s for the movie were obvious such as the Cozy Cone aka Wigwam Motel others required a little more research. I didn’t see a town that resembled “Radiator Springs” completely however, it sure seemed a lot like Seligman which is also a one street town with businesses lining the street on both sides. While it may not be the case I deduced this from the fact that the movie was loosely based on Arizona’s Route 66 and Seligman was the only town on Route 66 in Arizona that even remotely resembled it. I will be watching cars again to compare my pics to the location and businesses depicted in the Movie… I did believe and still agree that the mountain pass scenes were based on the Flagstaff area. Nice Work!

  310. Lou Perez

    My Girlfriend and I traveled Arizona’s Route 66 just a week and a half ago. I hadn’t been on Route 66 since 1966 and I wanted to see if I could figure out where Pixar got the inspiration for the movie. Well, it’s obvious that the Route 66 they show in the movie is Arizona’s Route 66 however, you are correct… the fictional town of Radiator Springs is a compilation of many landmarks along the Mother Road however, during my trip I felt that “Radiator Springs” resembled Seligman Arizona which is basically a short one street town and in doing further research I found out that my hunch was correct as the producers spent time in Seligman with Angel Delgadillo who is considered “the Angel of the Mother Road and was the driving force behind saving Route 66 in Arizona which in turn started organizations all along Route 66 to preserve it. Also in the movie, Radiator Springs is right by the I40 and the only town close to the 40 that resembles Radiator Springs is Seligman. Anyway, Great job by Disney and Pixar… Love the movie and appreciate it even more now!

  311. Maria

    Thank you so much! My little boy and
    I have been talking about a road trip and this was a good start to our research .

  312. dave elliott

    i alway’s wondered where film makers got inspration from this is very fasingnating to read and bring to life a great film and i will continue to study and read the history of such an interesting part of american history and culture and maybe one day will be able to visit the usa and drive down this famous road, wonderful site thank you.

  313. cassandra

    Theres a small town off if route 66 that we stoped at in arizona driving back to va that look just like the movie cars can someone please tell me the name of the town or city

  314. John Smith

    Very cool, but I think you are way over thinking the character analysis, however. Carlin’s character was based on his, and later Tommy Chong’s hippie Comedy routines and personsas, nothing more. Ditto for Tow-Mater’s character, it is based on Larry the Cable Guy’s stage act and, once again, persona. A great sight though. Cheers!

  315. mewanning

    I just finished my second leg of Route 66 ending in Albuquerque NM. So I watched Cars again for the references. In the scenes of the town, the 1st building on the right look like a modern Doc in a box. But with the smooth rounded edges, etc, I am beginning to wonder if it is not inspired by the old Boots Cafe in Carthage MO – which is now a Credit Union office. To create the office, it looks like the put stucco over over the old porcelain front. The door placement, etc is not the same but the lines, surface and color are identical to the old Cafe. Any ideas?

  316. Sara M

    Great great article…I drove Route 66 last year, and have always loved this movie (I’m 25). I never realized how significant this all was until I saw it again after my trip. I was floored and it made me love it 100 times more. Thanks again :)

  317. Saleh Aslam_Saudi Arabia.

    Hi, I haven’t been to Route 66 and may be i would never be there, but after i watch the movie CARS and read your complete blog its like i know everything about Route 66.

    1. Saleh Aslam_Saudi Arabia.

      Ron, My 4 years son requests If possible to send some rare pics of actual Route 66 specially the The Blue Swallow & Rock Cafe were the influence for the Sign of Cozy Cone and some more pics which resembles the Radiator Springs..

      Thanks in advance.

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