Cars 2 is a 2011 American computer-animated spy comedy film produced by Pixar Animation Studios for Walt Disney Pictures. It is a sequel to 2006's Cars and the second film in the Cars franchise. This was the final Pixar film animated with their old software system, Marionette, before officially replaced with Presto in 2012. It was directed by John Lasseter, written by Ben Queen, and produced by Denise Ream. In the film's ensemble voice cast, Owen Wilson, Larry the Cable Guy, Tony Shalhoub, Guido Quaroni, Bonnie Hunt, and John Ratzenberger reprise their roles from the first film. Paul Newman, who voiced Doc Hudson in the previous film, died in September 2008, so his character was written out of the film; George Carlin, who previously voiced Fillmore, died during the same year, and his role was passed to Lloyd Sherr. The returning cast is joined by Michael Caine, Emily Mortimer, John Turturro, Eddie Izzard, and Thomas Kretschmann, who voice the new characters introduced in this film.
The film follows race car Lightning McQueen (Wilson) and tow truck Mater (Cable Guy), who head to Japan and Europe to compete in the World Grand Prix, while Mater accidentally becomes sidetracked with international espionage, and then attempts to uncover a conspiracy led by a mysterious criminal mastermind and his gang, which threatens the lives of all competitors in the World Grand Prix, with the help of British spies Finn McMissile (Caine) and Holley Shiftwell (Mortimer).
Cars 2 premiered in Hollywood on June 18, 2011, and was released in the United States on June 24, 2011. The film was presented in Disney Digital 3D and IMAX 3D, as well as traditional two-dimensional and IMAX formats.
The film was first announced in 2008 alongside Up and Brave, and is the 12th animated film from the studio. Cars 2 received mixed reviews from critics but continued the studio's streak of box office success, grossed $562 million worldwide against its $200 million budget, and becoming the tenth highest-grossing film of 2011. The film was nominated for Best Animated Feature Film at the 69th Golden Globe Awards, but lost to The Adventures of Tintin. A sequel, Cars 3, was released on June 16, 2017. To date, this is the last Pixar film to be directed by Lasseter.