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The Cars 2 video game is a racing game for the Xbox 360, Xbox One (Backwards Compatible), Xbox Series X/S (Backwards Compatible), PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4 (With a PS Plus Premium Subscription), PS5 (With a PS Plus Premium Subscription), Wii, Nintendo DS, Nintendo 3DS, PlayStation Portable, and PC. It is the fourth installment in the main Cars series, and the sixth overall. Similar to every other Cars game, includes new features such as tracks and game modes. New items and characters were included, as well as improved multiplayer experience. Returning game modes are also present, such as the primary racing elements.



Up to four players can race in the game, which players can choose from more than 20 different characters and train to become world class spies. As part of their international training, players can participate in simulated hazardous missions using high-tech gadgets to evade and slow down adversaries.

Cars 2 used to feature connectivity with the World of Cars Online – a free-to-play browser-based, virtual world based on the hit Pixar animated Cars world. Players were able to discover a new world beyond Radiator Springs with Mater, Fillmore, Sarge and others as they gain rewards in the video game and then use them to unlock new items in the World of Cars Online. It was suitable for children with ages from 9-17. It does not work now, because the World of Cars Online closed.

On the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360, there are several other characters that the player can download and play in the game. However, some of those characters are from the first Cars movie and Cars Toons.


There are several different control schemes that can be used, depending on what iteration of the game the player is playing. Xbox 360, PlayStation and Wii controllers can be used for their respective consoles, while the handheld versions each utilize controls that are built into the system.

Basic controls

  • Accelerate: The car will begin to pick up speed until it has reached its top speed.
  • Turn: The car will turn the desired direction, whether it be left or right.
  • Drift: The car will take turns sharper, and fill up the turbo meter.
  • Boost: Once a section of the turbo meter glows yellow, the player can perform a quick speed boost to help them gain a lead.
  • Jump: The car will hop to jump over other cars or obstacles.

Advanced controls

  • In the Zone: Once all four sections of the turbo meter are filled up and glowing yellow, the player can perform an "In the Zone" ability. A force field will surround the car as it advances at remarkable speeds, pummeling anyone or anything that stands in its path.
  • Tricks: During a jump, the player can have the car perform a trick by moving the control stick. If a trick is successfully performed, the player will land on the ground with a small turbo meter award. However, if the player does not land correctly, no boost will be awarded, and time will be lost as the car is reset. Multiple tricks can be performed while in the air.

Modes of play

  • C.H.R.O.M.E. Missions: Divided into 6 clearance levels, this mode is similar to the story mode from past Cars games, though it lacks an open world. There are five different types of missions - races, battle races, hunters, survivals, and attack. In order to advance to a different clearance level, a certain number of spy points are required.
  • Free Play: Any unlocked C.H.R.O.M.E. missions can be played here, with a friend or in solo mode. Every category of mission can be found here.
  • Awards: Badges and crests serve as an achievement system, being awarded every time a player makes a significant accomplishment in the game. Receiving a badge or crest may also award a new character or alternate skin.
  • Settings: The game's settings can be modified here, including screen display and audio distribution.
  • Garage: Here is where the unlocking criteria for every character can be viewed. Once a character is unlocked, their profile can be viewed, displaying a short bio, as well as their weight class and statistics
  • The World of Cars Online: Until the World of Cars Online services were discontinued, Cars 2: The Video Game could connect to the online game. Doing so would open an additional world, with badges and crests unlocking new items.


Cars 2: The Video Game introduces an item system, something that was not present in any of the previous Cars video games. Most of them are spy-related weapons like machine guns and missile launchers, but there are some additional items like oil and leeches.

Image Name Description
Machine Guns A common weapon that will shoot rapid fire for a short amount of time.
Missiles A single-shot pair of missiles that will fire at an opponent.
Troika Missiles Three single-shot missiles that will fire at an opponent.
Skate Jack A remote-controlled car jack that will drive under an opponent and launch them in the air.
Impact Mine A mine that resides on the track until an opponent makes contact with it, exploding them in the process.
Oil Slick A small oil slick that will make opponents slip if ran into.
Satellite Quake A satellite laser that can be fired towards an opponent to blow them up.
Satellite Blitz A satellite laster that blows up the racer in first place, also spinning out any racers it hits along the way, very similar to the Spiny Shell from the Mario Kart series.
Energy Leech

An electric charge that bounces around, but soon stops snd remains in place. It spins out any car that touches it.

Energy Blaster An electric charge that generates on the roof of the player using a Van-de-Graaf-like apparatus which remotely delivers the shock to all opponents.

Playable characters

There are a total of 35 characters to be unlocked in the game, ten of which are accessible at the beginning of the game. To unlock more characters, the player must earn badges or crests, or advance to the next clearance level.

Starting characters

Unlockable characters

Unlocking criteria

Character Criteria
Carla Veloso Gain access to Clearance Level 2
Nigel Gearsley Gain access to Clearance Level 4
Miguel Camino Gain access to Clearance Level 4
Max Schnell Gain access to Clearance Level 3
Fillmore Gain access to Clearance Level 2
Guido Earn the "Frequent Flyer" crest
Professor Z Earn the "Capitol View" crest
Grem Gain access to Clearance Level 3
Acer Earn the "Road Trip" crest
Miles Axlerod Gain access to Clearance Level 5
Tomber Gain access to Clearance Level 6
Chuki Gain access to Clearance Level 6
Daisu Tsashimi Gain access to Clearance Level 6
Radiator Lightning Earn the "Runway Pancake" crest
Carbon Fiber Lightning Earn the "Agent - Third Class" crest
Materhosen Earn the "Agent - Fourth Class" crest
Finn - Union Jack Earn the "Agent - First Class" crest
Racer Holley Earn the "Agent - Second Class" crest
Midnight Francesco Earn the "Master Tracker" crest
Brand New Fillmore Earn the "Ready, Set, Go!" badge
Camo Sarge Earn the "Dangerous Cargo" badge
Team Lightning Luigi Earn the "Tokyo Vandal" badge
Team Lightning Guido Earn the "Bulldozer in a China Shop" crest
Gunner Acer Earn the "Road Rage" badge
Young Professor Z Earn the "Master Agent" crest

Downloadable characters

On the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 versions of the game, there was a total of 23 downloadable characters available for download. Most are skins of different characters. With the exception of The Queen, who can be downloaded for free, all characters are $1.00 each and some bundles of 4 characters are sold for $3.00 each.

Badges and crests

Name Unlock criteria
Master Agent Unlock 49 badges and crests
Smashing Drive through 100 breakable objects in a single event
World's Best Backwards Driver Drive backwards for a total of 60 seconds in a single event
Nothing But Air Tricks Complete 10 air tricks in a single event
Shock Value Use 15 turbos in a single event
Ready, Set, Go! Perform a perfect quick start
Hop-A-Long Hop 20 times in a single event
All Mine! Earn 30 seconds of bonus time by destroying Lemons in a single Attack mode event
Dangerous Cargo Destroy 5 explosive trucks in a single Attack Mission
Capitol View Gain access to the upper level of a skyscraper in Tokyo Arena
Survivor Get a gold trophy in a single Survivor Mission
Drop the Bomb Knock the Disruptor out of any opponent's grasp 5 times in a single Disruptor challenge
Eye in the Sky Destroy 3 lemons
Power Surge Collect 3 bonus batteries in a single Survival Mission.
Make Them Quake Hit any opponent 2 times with the Satellite Quake weapon.
Road Rage Bash 15 Lemons in Hunter Mode
Jet Setter Jump over an airplane's wings 3 times in Airport Arena
Jam Your Gears Drive through 10 fruit stands in Italy Arena
Island Hopper Use the island as a shortcut in Casino Tour
Bushwacked! Drive through 6 hedge sculptures in the Castle Courtyard in Hyde Tour
Lights Out Drive through 15 lamp posts in London Arena
Share the Spotlight Grab the attention of the Trimaran splotlight 3 times in a single event
Disruptor Disruptor In Disruptor Mode, destroy the opponent's base
Tractor Tipper Tip 3 tractors in a single Canyon Run, Timberline Sprint event or Radiator Springs Arena
Hudson Hornet Drift on a drift strip for a continuous 6 seconds in a single event
Tokyo Vandal Drive through 17 street signs in a single Tokyo race
Runway Pancake Collide 3 times with a landing aircraft in Runway Tour
Trick Master String together 5 tricks in a single jump
Bash 'n' Crash Side bash 100 cars
Bulldozer in a China Shop Drive through 500 breakables
Tailgater Spend 5 minutes drafting cars
In Your Face Drive backwards for 15 minutes
Stunt Driver Perform 150 air tricks
Turbo Charged Use turbo 250 times
Eat My Dust Get 40 perfect Quick Starts
Agent - Fourth Class Unlock any 10 badges or crests
Agent - Third Class Unlock any 20 badges or crests
Agent - Second Class Unlock any 30 badges or crests
Agent - First Class Unlock any 40 badges or crests
Leader of the Track Get a gold trophy in all of the C.H.R.O.M.E. Hunter Missions
Lock 'n' Load Collect and use each type of weapon
License Expired! Destroy 250 Lemons in Attack Mode
Dead Eye Hit the chase car 25 times with any weapon in Survival Mode
Special Delivery Deliver the Disruptor 35 times in Disruptor Mode
Disruptor Interruptor Knock the Disruptor out of 30 opponent's grasps in Disruptor Mode
Road Trip Drive 250 kilometers
Bumper Car Take out 50 opponents in Arena Mode
International Car of Mystery Get a bronze trophy or better in every C.H.R.O.M.E. mission
Frequent Flyer Spend 20 minutes in the air
Master Tracker Collect 20 Spy Point Pick-ups

C.H.R.O.M.E. missions

Acer preparing for a race against various Lemon cars.

There are six clearance levels, each one consisting of 5-8 missions. There are five types of missions - races, battle races, hunters, survivals, and attacks. You have to receive a certain number of spy points in order to make it to the next clearance level.

New Agent Training

Clearance Level 1

  • Unwelcome Aboard
  • In Plane Sight
  • Fast Friends
  • Airport Invasion
  • There's No Place Like C.H.R.O.M.E.
  • Oil Rig Showdown

Clearance Level 2

  • Hit the Road
  • World Grand Prix
  • Runway Invasion
  • Porto Corsa Invasion
  • Objects in Mirrors
  • Airport Showdown

Clearance Level 3

  • Burning the Midnight Oil
  • Coastal Invasion
  • Runway Runaway
  • Harbor Hassle
  • Power Surge
  • London Showdown

Clearance Level 4

  • Foe Interior
  • Hit or McMissile
  • Unfriendly Competition
  • Air Power
  • Rush Delivery
  • Italy Showdown

Clearance Level 5

  • Tokyo Invasion
  • Save the Queen
  • Sour Lemons
  • Lightning the Mood
  • Home Security
  • Tokyo Showdown

Clearance Level 6

  • London Invasion
  • Casino Run
  • Ginza Invasion
  • Trial in the Timbers
  • Rumble in the Red Rocks
  • Return to the Rig

References to other media

  • Cars: Some of the Radiator Springs elements depict features such as Willy's Butte and the Tractor Tipping fields.
  • Cars: The Video Game: The main Radiator Springs town layout is similar to the open world from this game.
  • Cars 2: Several characters that debuted in this film are present in the game, many along with their respective voice actors. The game is also based around the film in general.

References in later media


Despite the film's negative reviews, the game has received positive reviews, with a score of 76 on Metacritic for the Xbox 360 version. IGN gave the title a 8 out of 10 rating. Stating that "Cars 2 is a great multiplayer game that rivals Mario Kart. Playing alone isn't quite as fun, but it's still a solid solo experience. The fact that there's little story doesn't really matter because you won't miss it, and don't let the license scare you off. Under all the Pixar beauty is an extremely fun game." The Official Xbox Magazine gave it a 7.5 out of 10 rating. Praising fun and polished racing but criticizing the fact that online play was missing from the title. Gameinformer gave the title a 7.75 out of 10 rating, Calling it a satisfying racing experience. Christopher Healy on Common Sense Media awarded the game 5 stars, and called it "Great combat racing, but loads of gunfire and explosions.", stating "The mix of spy-gadget combat and fast-paced racing action in the game is a great way to translate the secret agent theme of the Cars 2 film into video game form. While the fighting aspect feels a bit intense for young kids, it's presented in a way that is easy to pick up and incredibly fun and exciting for players who are old enough to handle it."

"The game looks and plays great. There are loads of ways to earn nitro boosts during a race -- jumps, stunts, backward driving, taking out opponents, etc. -- and using those boosts for last-minute surges to the finish line can be wildly suspenseful. There's a nice big selection of cars from the get-go, and by the end, you'll have a staggering amount of characters to choose from. Multiplayer is a blast, too (even if, perhaps, a bit too literally)."


For this subject's image gallery, see Cars 2: The Video Game/Gallery.

Beta Elements

Main article: Cars 2: The Video Game/Beta elements


Main article: Cars 2: The Video Game/Glitches

Hyde tour spawning glitch

Occasionally, the race will spawn a character on the opposite end of the race track, not allowing the car to accelerate, instead only allowing side bashing.

Nigel Gearsley laughing glitch

On some occasions, Nigel Gearsley's laughing sound clip will be stuck on repeat until the race ends. Until the finish line, players will hear Nigel laughing over and over again which covers most of the sounds and music. This is part of a glitch shown below.

Game lock-up glitch

Occasionally during Races, Battle Races, Attacks, or Survivals, the game's soundtrack will begin to stutter and the character's voice clips will be stuck on repeat until the event ends. When the player restarts the event or try to exit it, the game will show a black screen and lock up. The only way to get out of this screen is to reset the console. This glitch only occurs on the PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, and PC versions.

Game freezing glitch

Sometimes as the character select screen loads up, the game will freeze and make a loud buzzing noise and then the player must unplug their console and then plug it back in. Resetting the console will do nothing. This glitch only occurs on the Wii and PC versions. (If the glitch occurs on the PC version, the player must force shut down their computer.)


Main article: Cars 2: The Video Game/Staff


For a complete list of media for this subject, see List of Cars 2: The Video Game media.

Names in other languages

Language Name Meaning
Spanish Cars 2: El videojuego Cars 2: The Videogame
French Cars 2: Le jeu vidéo Cars 2: The video game
Turkish Arabalar 2: Video Oyunu Cars 2: The video game


  • In the developer diaries, a few of the "cameras" were labeled "Camera A113."
  • A Plug-N-Play version of the game by Jakks Pacific was also released.
  • Many of the World Grand Prix racers who were muted in the movie have speaking roles in the game.
  • The Queen can participate in races only.
  • In 2015, the game was playable on the PlayStation 4, streaming with a PS Now subscription.
  • Now, as of June 13th in North America, the game is available to stream on both PlayStation 4 and PlayStation 5 via streaming with a PS Plus Premium Subscription. Europe will be getting the new service on June 23rd.
  • Lightyear Lightning and Francesco - Hotrod are the only characters exclusive to PlayStation.
  • The multiplayer on PC version can have only two players, The Nintendo Wii, PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 versions multiplayer can have four players.
  • This is the first Cars game not to be published by THQ.
  • This is the first Cars game to be developed by Avalanche Studios.
  • This is the first and last Cars game to be published by Disney Interactive (not including Disney Infinity).
  • This is the first and last Cars game to have DLC.
  • There are only two racers that are missing in the game, which are Rip Clutchgoneski and Lewis Hamilton for unknown reasons.
    • Lewis was intended to appear in the PSP version of the game. As he was found in beta screenshots.
    • This is the last Cars game where Keith Ferguson voices lightning McQueen
  • Cars 3: Driven to Win's animations were reused from this game.
Cars 2: The Video Game
Playable Characters
Lightning McQueenTow MaterFinn McMissileHolley ShiftwellFrancesco BernoulliRaoul ÇaRouleCarla VelosoJeff GorvetteNigel GearsleyShu TodorokiMiguel CaminoMax SchnellFillmoreSargeLuigiGuidoProfessor ZGremAcerTomberMiles AxlerodChukiDaisu TsashimiRadiator LightningCarbon Fiber LightningMaterhosenFinn - Union JackRacer HolleyMidnight FrancescoBrand New FillmoreCamo SargeTeam Lightning LuigiTeam Lightning GuidoGunner AcerYoung Professor ZRod "Torque" RedlineRod Redline: UndercoverDragon LightningTokyo MaterCherry Blossom HolleyFinn - Airport SecurityMater the GreaterDaredevil LightningThe QueenFloSheriffRamoneChick HicksWingoSnot RodBoostDJUncle TopolinoMater IvanKabuki MaterVictor Hugo
C.H.R.O.M.E. Missions
Unwelcome AboardIn Plane SightFast FriendsAirport InvasionThere's No Place Like ChromeOil Rig ShowdownHit the RoadWorld Grand PrixRunway InvasionPorto Corsa InvasionObjects in MirrorAirport ShowdownBurning the Midnight OilCoastal InvasionRunway RunawayHarbor HasslePower SurgeLondon ShowdownFoe InteriorHit or McMissileUnfriendly CompetitionAir PowerRush DeliveryItaly ShowdownTokyo InvasionSave the QueenSour LemonsLightning the MoodHome SecurityTokyo Showdown
Further info
Beta elementsStaff