For generations, toy racing cars have stayed essentially the same—they may have added more flashing lights, cooler designs, and faster speeds but were essentially different versions of a hunk of plastic and metal. But the geniuses at Sphero, the company behind the BB-8 Star Wars ball bot and a series of educational tools, just destroyed that paradigm with the Cars 3 Lightning McQueen. “It’s the most advanced robotic toy ever,” says CEO Paul Berberian—and it’s hard to argue with that after seeing the car in action.
Tied to the upcoming Disney movie, the toy brings to life the character with an animatronic mouth (that tells jokes and carries on conversations in the voice of Owen Wilson) and “emotive” suspension that responds to motion and touch. The remote-controlled toy was designed by a team of 40 engineers and designers and sells for $299 in the United States. Believe me, your kid is going to be requesting this for Christmas or their birthday or just about any other day of the year.