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Happy Villaintine's Day from Disney Parks Blog

John Lasseter Tests Luigi’s Flying Tires at Disney California Adventure Park

posted on December 26th, 2011 by Kathy Mangum, Executive Producer & Vice President, Walt Disney Imagineering

When I talk about Cars Land, people often ask me which of our three new attractions is my favorite. That is an impossible question to answer! I love them all and for different reasons. Recently we began ride testing Luigi’s Flying Tires and it is promising to be a fantastic experience. There’s nothing like it anywhere in the world.

The vehicles have been made to look like oversized Fettuccini brand tires – the same tires Luigi proudly displays in his shop, Luigi’s Casa della Tires. Once guests are seated inside their tires, Luigi will direct Guido to turn on the air compressor. With that command, air will be pumped up through openings in the floor of the tire yard and the vehicles will begin to float and fly. With Luigi’s Flying Tires, the guest is really in control of the vehicle. By shifting your weight around, you can control the direction of your travel. And if that’s not enough fun, you can always turn a lever and make your tire spin!

John Lasseter recently stopped by to visit with the team and to take a tire for a flight and, as you can see in our video, he has quickly become one of our best flyers. The Imagineer is who is riding with John and giving flying directions is Mike Kilbert, our lead ride engineer and designer for the attraction. Also, John’s son Bennett and Ben’s girlfriend Holly were there and got a chance to try their hand at it – they’re pretty good for a couple of novices! I think you can tell by John’s reaction that he thinks we’ve got a winner on our hands. I couldn’t agree more!

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Filed: Disney California Adventure Park, Disneyland Resort



Samantha on December 26th, 2011 at 1:13 pm

wow! It does look like fun! I saw a video of them testing it a week or so ago and it looked like it was going so slow and kinda boring but i think that was just cause they were testing it. I think this might be one of my favorites in carsland.


Fred from CA on December 26th, 2011 at 1:39 pm

That looks awesome!

I cannot wait for Cars Land to open! :)


Richard on December 26th, 2011 at 2:23 pm

Looks like an improved “Flying Saucers”.


Robert from FL on December 26th, 2011 at 2:41 pm

Since I’m not old enough to have been on Disneyland’s original Flying Saucers, this looks really exciting – I hope I get the chance to try it!

In “Cars 2″ I found a little inside joke about John Lasseter on a sign during one of the races that read “Lasse-tyre” or something close to that – that’s really appropriate for this video!


Thor from CA on December 26th, 2011 at 3:37 pm

Oh, this looks like so much fun! I’d seen the other video of the testing where the tires were going really slowly over the platform, probably because it was the first testing. But this new video with real people in the tires going really FAST looks so much more fun!!! I can’t wait to do this in person next summer!


Kevin on December 26th, 2011 at 3:56 pm

OMG are you kidding me? That really IS fast!

After seeing the preview video for Tow Mater and having driven Tuck and Roll I had no hope that this ride would be fast. But, boy oh boy this looks AWESOME.

Speaking of which, can someone poke John Lasseter and ask him to allow the Tuck and Roll Buggies to move faster?


Amanda on December 26th, 2011 at 5:45 pm

It was only a matter of time before they would bring back the “Flying Saucers” ride. So glad and excited; can’t wait to try them out!!


Mary on December 26th, 2011 at 6:52 pm

This looks like so much fun! I cant wait to go and see the new Cars Land!!! Any news on an opening date???


Mary on December 26th, 2011 at 6:54 pm

This looks like so much fun! Like a giant air hockey table!!!
I cant wait to go and see the new Cars Land!!! When are they going to announce the date for the opening of opening of Cars Land???


Jim from NY on December 26th, 2011 at 8:09 pm

OMG, bring this to WDW!


Eric on December 26th, 2011 at 8:22 pm

Nice to see two grown adults (loosely, in Lasseter’s case 😉 ) can ride the tires and still float–
Was worried there might be a maximum weight limit and a kids-only ride, but looks like some heavy duty tires.


toni from CA on December 26th, 2011 at 9:31 pm

Guess I’ll be wearing my flying saucers t shirt when I go on these.


Ed on December 26th, 2011 at 9:46 pm

Will this have a weight limit on it like the Flying Saucers did?


Shih Hao Jesse on December 26th, 2011 at 9:57 pm

That ride looks totally awesome and fun! I can’t wait to try that one out! How can I be tester??!!


DEBBIE on December 26th, 2011 at 10:05 pm

This was my favorite ride as a kid!!! Can’t wait to ride them again!


eric on December 26th, 2011 at 10:15 pm

wow thats cool. if you look back in the early days of disneyland they had that same thing. it just didnt look like you where on tires. i have old movie film of my parents when they where in there early 20’s bouncing about into eack other. i thought it would be cool if they still had that. looks like they will again soon! :-)


Colleen from TX on December 26th, 2011 at 10:15 pm

Okay, this is getting really exciting. Two ride previews, can’t wait for the main attraction.


Marjorie on December 26th, 2011 at 10:26 pm

Awesome. Opening soon, I hope.


maria on December 26th, 2011 at 10:27 pm

i ♥ EVERYTHING Disney!! this ride is gunna be so awesome!!! oh yeah for my kids too lol =)


Don on December 26th, 2011 at 10:35 pm

OMG! I didn’t ever believe that Disney would bring back my favorite childhood ride…The Flying Saucers! I can’t wait until Cars Land opens. How fun!!!


Don on December 26th, 2011 at 10:38 pm

I can’t believe that Disney actually brought back a new and improved version of my favorite childhood ride…The Flying Saucers!
I can’t wait for Cars Land to open! How fun!!!


Richard from AZ on December 26th, 2011 at 11:35 pm

The Flying Saucers were my favorite ride when I was a kid. I can’t wait to try out the new ones!


Stephen from CA on December 27th, 2011 at 12:52 am

I remember the old flying saucers at Disneyland and always wondered why they took it away. It was a blast then, and now it’s going to be at DCA. Whoppee!!!


Jennifer on December 27th, 2011 at 2:40 am

My son and I got to meet him while in Sonoma last Friday. Amazingly nice man and he was so sweet to my son. He kept hinting at how awesome the new Cars Land is going to be. This kid cannot wait. Oh, and neither can my three year old. ;o)


Karen on December 27th, 2011 at 5:12 am

#10 – My mother wouldn’t allow me to ride the original “Flying Saucers” years ago, so I’m REALLY looking forward to trying out the new and improved version!!


robert on December 27th, 2011 at 8:01 am

That looks like a lot of fun!!! Any chance WDW may get a version of this type of attraction?


Dan from WI on December 27th, 2011 at 10:27 am

Very very cool. How great would it be to be John Lasseter’s kid and able to test ride systems! Good for him. Looks like a blast.


Valerie from IL on December 27th, 2011 at 11:15 am

Read somewhere its opening July 2012… just booked our Christmas trip to DLR a couple weeks ago!>)


Ann on December 27th, 2011 at 12:31 pm

Tick, tick, tick…..Is it June 2012 yet? I’m really looking forward to the new Cars Land. There is some seriously brilliant imagineering going on!


Diana from sonora on December 27th, 2011 at 12:45 pm

i hope it has fastpass….looks great!


Krista on December 27th, 2011 at 2:17 pm

I remember seeing a video of that ride from the early Disneyland and I always thought it looked like so much fun. I’m glad to see it is coming back. I can’t wait to finally try it!


Margo on December 27th, 2011 at 2:22 pm

When I was a kid, we didn’t get to Disneyland much, so I don’t remember the flying saucers. But one of my friends all she talks about is this ride and she has got me excited about it.
A few weeks ago when I was leaving the World of Color show, the work lights were on the mountains and as we passed by on the way out, it was so inviting!! I am totally looking forward to Cars land opening. Also looking forward to checking out the snack food in the traffic cones. Thank you Disney Imangineers for coming up with this idea. It looks like it will be a lot of fun. Hope every thing is on schedule so the opening will be when they say it will be. Also maybe a passholder previews PLEASE!!


Monica from CA on December 27th, 2011 at 6:03 pm

Well it may look pretty dang fast now. I would imagine though, that once the full compliment of “tires” {whatever ever that number actually is} are placed on the table for regular operation… you won’t have quite as much room to get to zooming around sideways. Not to take the wind outta the sails here. Just being realistic. Think, bumper cars at the local county fair. How much careening around to get speed up to do?? Best, M


brian on December 27th, 2011 at 7:03 pm

cant what


Tony from CA on December 27th, 2011 at 7:39 pm

Wow have they set an opening date in 2012 yet?


William on December 27th, 2011 at 9:07 pm

REminds me of the Flying saucers ride in Tomarrowland back in the 60’s !


mel on December 27th, 2011 at 11:01 pm

SOOOOOOOOOOO excited — I can’t wait. Please, have an AP event for soft testing!


Fred from CA on December 30th, 2011 at 2:33 am

For anyone who was wondering, the reason why the Flying Saucers attraction was removed from Disneyland was because the ride had many mechanical problems.


Louis from CA on December 30th, 2011 at 11:46 pm

Enjoyed the Flying Saucers so much as a kid, curious how I will feel about the Flying Tires as a grownup?


Frankie on January 1st, 2012 at 9:41 pm

Now a question.
Sense there is soon to be duplicates of 2 rides from a bugs land in cars land which are much better than tuck and rolls buggies and francis’ boogie, are the bugs land ones going to be taken out because there are better one’s right next door? This could be a great chance to add a food and merchandise location into a bugs land and maybe expand Hemlich’s ride.