- Guido's pit stop is without a doubt the Crowning Moment of Awesome for this film. The reaction of Chick Hicks' pit crew is priceless - they drop their mustache grilles. "Peet stop."
- Many adults giggled during the media frenzy scene... just because they depicted a host named "Jay Limo" who looks like Jay Leno. Even some of the films' detractors in the 00s thought that was Actually Pretty Funny.
- Lightning tries to use Doc's advice to "turn right to go left"—-only to thud into another cactus patch; and the impact also causes a tall saguaro to fall on him
Lightning: Ow! Ow, that—(saguaro falls on top of him) OWWWWWWWWWWWW!!!!!!
- Lightning muttering to himself about his failed use of Doc's advice.
Lightning: "Turn right to go left"...Guess what? I tried it, and you know what? This crazy thing happened - I went right!
Lizzie: You keep talkin' to yourself, people will think you're crazy.
Lightning: (sarcastically) Thanks for the tip.
Lizzie: What? I wasn't talking to you.
- Harv buttering up Lightning:
Harv: And it is such an honor to be your agent that it almost hurts me to take ten percent of your winnings. And merchandising. And ancillary rights in perpetuity-- anyway, what a race, huh, champ?
Harv: "You can't buy this kind of publicity! What do you need me for? That's just a figure of speech, by the way, you signed a contract."
- And later after Harv finds Lightning:
- What really sells this moment is his change of tone, mid-sentence. At first it's loud and hammy, then it's all serious and quiet, with no warning.
- "AND MY NAME IS NOT CHUCK!" Even better is that his character is listed in the credits as "Not Chuck".
- Comes up again in the mini-biography collection you can unlock on the Blu-ray. Actually most of the biographies are pretty funny.
- This exchange:
Mater: I know this might be a bad time right now, but you owe me thirty two thousand dollars in legal fees.Lightning: What?Mater: *Nods*
- When Doc introduces Lightning to Bessie and sentences him to community service:
Lightning: Whoa, whoa, whoa, how long is this gonna take?
Doc: Well, if a fella does it right, it should take him about five days.
Lightning: Five days?! But I should be in California shmoozing Dinoco right now!
Doc: Then if I were you, I'd quit yappin' and start workin'! Hook him up, Mater!
Mater: Okey-dokey! [struggles with getting the clamp off Lightning's left front tire, but successfully removes the clamp, allowing Lightning to speed off into the distance]
Mater: (as Doc glares at him) Err...Maybe I should've, uh...hooked him up to Bessie... and THEN, uh...then took the boot off?Sheriff: Boy, we're not as dumb as you think we are.
Lightning: B-B-But-But...H-H-H-How-How did...?
Sally: We siphoned your gas while you were passed out. Kachow. (shines her headlight in Lightning's face; Lightning grumbles.)
- Doc completely Trolling Lightning when he gets stuck in the cactus patch.
Doc: Hey! Was that floating like a Cadillac or was that stinging like a Beamer? I'm confused! You drive like ya fix roads! Lousy!
- This exchange between Fillmore and Sarge:
Fillmore: "I'm telling you, man, every third blink is slower."Sarge: "The '60s weren't good to you, were they?"
- Made even funnier via Word of God stating that the animators did, in fact, make every third blink a little slower than the first two.
- Chick Hicks getting booed off the stage.
- The utter contempt for the Fourth Wall displayed in the credits where Mack comments on John Ratzenberger's voice in Cars versions of several other Pixar films.
Mack: Wait a minute here, they're just using the same actor over and over! What kind of cut-rate production is this?
- Various dialogues during credits scene which shows Toy Story, Monsters, Inc., and A Bug's Life are recycled AS CARS!.
Woody The Wagon: "YOU! ARE A TOY! CAAAARRRRR!"
- The whole tractor-tipping scene with Lightning and Mater, up to and including the encounter with Frank. Mater demonstrates by sneaking up to one tractor. He then honks his horn, startling the tractor, which rolls forward and pitches up on its back wheels. But race cars like Lightning don't have horns, so he revs his engine at full blast instead, intending to tip just the tractor he's snuck up on. Every single tractor in the field that isn't already down tips over. They both get a good laugh out of it — until they hear the sound of a bull bellowing.
Mater: ...That's Frank.
Mater: Hey, listen, listen! If anybody asks you, we was out smashing mailboxes, okay? (speeds away)Lightning: What? (sees tractors coming up the road)
- Becomes even funnier when you realize it's the equivalent of two morons going out cow tipping, but end up waking an angry bull.
- Gets its Brick Joke when the tractors stampede the town:
- And later on, Lightning's nightmare about Frank winning the big race.
- Lightning's Freak-Out when Van and Minny quickly flee Radiator Springs, while he's stuck to Bessie, flailing around:
Lightning: Don't leave me here! I'm in Hillbilly Hell! My IQ is dropping by the second!! I'M BECOMING ONE OF THEEEEEEMMMMM!!
- Bonus points when you realize that he does become one of them by the end of the movie.
- The very final scene after the credits, where Van and Minny are lost in the desert.
(Van and Minnie are in the middle of the desert, dusty, still looking for California)Minnie: [exhausted] Oh, for the love of Chrysler, can we please ask someone for directions?Van: [delirious and hysterical] NO! There's another ramp close! I KNOW IT! I CAN FEEL IT! HA! HA! HA! HA! HA! HA! HA! HA! HA! HA! HA! HA! HA! HA! HA!!!
- Every morning, Sarge raises the flag while playing "Reveille" and Fillmore plays the Jimi Hendrix's rendition of "The Star-Spangled Banner" loudly next door:
Sarge: WILL YOU TURN THAT DISRESPECTFUL JUNK OFF?!Fillmore: Respect the classics, man! It's Hendrix!
- A meta example for the animators brainstorming session. They got tripped up by a metaphor.
- Lightning going crazy fixing the road at night, after crashing at North Willys Butte:
Lightning: [sarcastically] Radiator Springs! A HAPPY place! [Bessie squirts a blob of pavement on him] Oh! Okay, Bessie, you think that's funny?! GREAT! I'M TALKING TO BESSIE NOW! I'M TALKING TO BESSIE!!
- A lot of Chick's misleading insults can get a laugh.
Chick: Hey McQueen. That was some pretty darn good racing out there. BY ME!
- For example, after McQueen's crew abandon him.
Chick: Well, I bet that was pretty embarrassing. But I wouldn't worry about it. Because I didn't do it!
- And when McQueen flies through the curtain too early and shows himself up.
- In the opening race, footage is shown of previous races in the season. The frame is frozen every time the finish line is crossed, showing Chick in third place, pulling an angry scowl (and most likely about to curse) in every single one.
- Mater's story about a talent he used to have as Lightning tries to fix the road:
Mater: Y'know, I used to be a purty good whistler! I can't do it now of course, on account of sometimes I get fluid built up in ma' engine block, but Doc said he's gonna fix it, though. He can fix about anything! That's why we made him the judge. Boy, you shoulda heard me on Giddy-Up, Oom Papa Mow Mow! Now, I'm not one to brag, but people come purty far to see me get low on the "Mow-Mow"!
- And Lightning's mood as he listens to this annoyingly long story is completely nuts as well. He scowls and rolls his eyes as he struggles to ignore it and get the road finished while struggling to pull Bessie, who is rather heavy.
- And then Bessie spits some tar on one of Lightning's lucky lightning bolts, which he has throughout the majority of his visit. Mater offers to get it off by Spit Shine, but Lightning disgustingly turns it down.
- Pretty much EVERY time Bessie spits tar on the car that is pulling her. When she is about to do so, she makes a pulsating noise that sounds like laughter, giving her at least some sentience despite having no face.
- The first "new road" that Lightning ends up making due to rushing his job. Mater testing it out doubles it.
- Mater teasing Lightning about his relationship with Sally:
Mater: McQueen and Sally parked beneath the tree, K-I-S-somethin'-somethin'-somethin'-T!
Mater: McQueen and Sally parked beneath the tree, K-I-S-S-uh...I-N-T!Lightning: Great timing, Mater!
- This happens again in the final scene as Lightning and Sally have a romantic moment and inch towards each other as if about to kiss...until Mater ruins the moment.