Original Carsland: Never Built Disney California Adventure

Never Built Disney California Adventure

Dang Near Fainted Sing Radiator Springs Racers Disney California Adventure Disneyland

Cars Land is one of the most popular sections of Disney California Adventure and started to help transition the park to its current success. But this was not the original plan for this land, and the original version was set to look very different.

Cars Land actually started development as a land that didn't have any connection to any Disney or Pixar characters known as Carsland.

Carsland No Pixar Concept Art Disney California Adventure Disneyland

This initial concept was set to be a 1950s-1960s inspired small town along historic Route 66 inspired by classic cars. It would have been located in the desert and be surrounded by a mountain range that served as a berm for the land.

At night it would have lit up with brilliant neon lights, with each facade being adorned with several light displays.

Carsland Dine In Theater Concept Art Disney California Adventure Disneyland

This land would have held three major elements, a large restaurant, and two attractions.

The first attraction was set to be an outdoor indoor hybrid dark ride known as Road Trip USA. This ride was set to feature a tribute to all the classic tourist traps and souvenir shops alongside Route 66, driving along a portion of the iconic road in a 1950s style car.

This attraction went through many phases of development as Carsland was designed, first with a more generic theme, then a theme that involved Disney characters called Goofy About Roadtrips, which was still basically the same concept. Eventually, once the first Cars film was created, it was tied to that film with the rest of the land still maintaining a more generic theme.

The other attraction was to be known as Junkyard Jamboree and went through various phases as a show or a traditional dark ride through a junkyard.

Sci Fi Dine In Sign At Night Disney's Hollywood Studios Walt Disney World

A drive-in movie theater restaurant was also planned, bringing a version of the Sci-Fi Dine-In Theater from Disney's Hollywood Studios to the park.

Lightning McQueen at Flo's Cars Land Disney California Adventure

This land began development before the Cars franchise existed. The franchise was a perfect fit with the proposed land, practically having an identical theme to the film itself, minus the cars themselves being alive. Cars was a film taking place on Route 66 about a bygone era filled with nostalgia for the 1950s. The land naturally evolved into Radiator Springs, and took on many of the elements of the originally proposed version.

Ramone's Scene Radiator Springs Racers Cars Land Disney California Adventure

Road Trip USA developed into Radiator Springs Racers, adding in a thrill element to a ride that looked very similar to the originally proposed version.

The concepts for Junkyard Jamboree would be abandoned, but the name would be kept for an attraction featuring Mater and his tractors.

While the drive-in theater was never built, it was proposed for the phase two of the land that never got built.

Radiator Springs Rout 66 Store Cars Land Disney California Adventure Disneyland

Carsland may not have ever gotten built, but Cars Land ended up bringing the same basic idea to the Disney Parks in a way the whole family could enjoy.