New Cars 2 Images And Video

Get at taste of Pixar's summer plans...

Disney Pixar's offering this summer is Cars 2, their follow up to 2006's effort. And just as they did last year with Toy Story 3, they're planning to roll out their teasers for the film gradually from, well, today.

So here we have some familiar characters who have been slightly gussied up for their second outing. They're lead by Owen Wilson's Lightning McQueen race car - who's also the star of a video clip, preening and revving for the camera. Then there's Tow Mater (Larry the Cable Guy), Mack (Pixar perennial John Ratzenberger), Luigi (Tony Shalhoub), Guido (Guido Quaroni), Sarge (Paul Dooley) and Fillmore (originally voiced by the late, great George Carlin).

The story this time sees Lightning and Mater head off around the world to compete in a series of races against the globe's fastest cars. Their sporting agenda is complicated, however, when they accidentally become entangled in an international spy operation. Like, bummer.

We reckon that the globetrotting plot and addition of some action should address quite a few of the shortcomings of the original film, but we'll see for certain when the finished product, directed by John Lasseter and Brad Lewis, hits UK cinemas on July 22.

Keep an eye out over the next few weeks for more character profiles on the newcomers joining the gang. In the meantime, here are the new character blurbs for each of these returning characters.

Lightning McQueen (aka Lightning)*
Number 95 Lightning McQueen is still a hotshot racecar, but his rookie days are past him. Now a permanent resident of Radiator Springs, Lightning has become a bona fide worldwide celebrity as winner of four Piston Cups.*

After his latest win, Lightning returns home to enjoy life in the slow lane for a while with sweetheart Sally, bestfriend Mater and the rest of his Radiator Springs family. His off-season isunexpectedly cut short when Mater inadvertently prompts Lightning to enter the World Grand Prix, a high profile, three-part exhibition race that will take him around the globe.

With a fresh custom paint job and real, working headlights, Lightning sets off to Japan, Italy and England with Mater in tow for the adventure of a lifetime. But competing against the fastest cars in the world tests more than his racing skills when Lightning realizes his wide-eyed best friend may not be the pit chief nor ambassador he needs to navigate the unfamiliar international terrain.

Luigi
Radiator Springs resident Luigi is a big-hearted, gregarious and excitable Italian Fiat 500. A tire virtuoso andowner of Luigi’s Casa Della Tires, he and his sidekick Guido join Lightning and Mater as members of Team Lightning McQueen for the World Grand Prix. Luigi is also an aficionado and fanatic for all things Italian, and is particularly enchanted with Ferrari race cars. When the competition takes the team to his hometown of Porto Corsa, Italy, Luigi is over the moon to introduce the Radiator Springs crew to his charming village and the wonderful ways of Italy. His family welcomes the gang from Radiator Springs in a big, passionate Italian way: Amore!
Guido
Guido, the little Italian forklift, is the backbone of Casa Della Tires. He’s Luigi’s assistant and best friend, and together they are the biggest Ferrari racing fans in Carburetor County. A car of few English words other than “pit stop,” Guido is a force to be reckoned with when he’s changing tires in the pits during a race. Joining Team Lightning McQueen for the World Grand Prix, Guido will get to show off his turbo-charged, pedal-to-the-metal pit stops on the global stage…and maybe, just maybe, he’ll see some Ferraris!**

Fillmore
Radiator Springs’ resident hippie Fillmore is an easy-going, peace-loving 1960s Volkswagen van. And as his friend and neighbor Sarge likes to say, “once a hippie, always a hippie.” At his popular shop Fillmore’s Organic Fuel, Fillmore brews his own fuel, which he sells with Bohemian accessories like tie-dyed mud flaps. But when he learns that the World Grand Prix will be run exclusively on the alternative fuel Allinol, Fillmore closes up shop and signs on as the fuel expert for Team Lightning McQueen.
Sarge
Green Army Jeep Sarge is a patriotic veteran who runs the Radiator Springs Army surplus store, Sarge’s Surplus Hut. Sarge’s no-nonsense attitude often leads to bickering with his hippie friend, neighbor and polar opposite, Fillmore. Despite their differences, the two are almost inseparable – even throughout their world travels. A security specialist with military connections around the globe, Sarge joins Lightning and Mater at the World Grand Prix as a member of Team Lightning McQueen.
Mack
Mack is Lightning McQueen’s trusted long-haul driver, crisscrossing the country from race to race, always with a smile on his grill. After dropping Lightning off in Radiator Springs with his fourth Piston Cup championship trophy, Mack sets off with the rest of the pit crew for a well-deserved vacation. Who knew that Lightning would end up jetting off to a race around the globe in the World Grand Prix?**