to The Leland Turbo Dossier...a tribute to the doomed British spy and
colleague of Finn McMissile in Disney/Pixar's Cars 2. This is an independent site
and has no connection with those companies, though we gratefully acknowledge and respect their creation and ownership of the
character. No income will be generated by or for this site.
Leland is a unique character inasmuch as he is the first one seen in Cars 2, and he dies shortly after his debut. The fact and nature of his death has been discussed across the
internet, and many fans have remarked on the perversity of the graphic display of his compacted remains in a children's film
(as well as the onscreen torture and ultimate death of Rod "Torque" Redline). Leland is a tragic figure, a doomed
character who we see as eager and earnest in his attempt to relate his discovery of the villains' plans and to warn his friend
Finn in the process. Perhaps we see ourselves in his unrewarded struggle to do what's right, trying to better the world and
facing the ultimate public humiliation for his efforts.
he's just cool. Leland is truly a British classic—both in his design and in the movie-super-spy origins he shares with
What kind of car is Leland?
Below is a comparison of Leland with an early-sixties E-Type (top) and an Austin Healey race
car from the same era. Note how precisely the Jaguar wheel knock-offs match Leland's—even rotated in the exact same
positions front and back. (These three images were combined to create the "Fantasy Leland" image at the top of this
site. According to Disney's character biography of Leland, he's the fictitious 1965 Runwell-Type SR.)
on all small photos to view larger versions.)
The Leland Turbo in these photos
was produced by Mattel on August 15, 2011 and first revealed online two months later. Compared to the prototype image seen
in the center of the first grouping, it features a more Leland-like wide-eyed expression, though the pupils are a bit small
compared to Leland's. It's a beautiful three-dimensional realization of the character, nicely capturing the lines of the vehicle
and featuring a brilliant red paint job.
at it more critically, the headlights are painted over the rounded front end rather than recessed like Leland's design. Also,
he has a "non-canon" smile (like the prototype), and the shape of the paint application is not consistent with the
sculpt of the mouth.
The second grouping includes a detail of Leland's packaging; he's the exclusive vehicle in a two-pack
with (the existing single version of) Finn McMissile that is now available through private Mattel distributors and will reach
stores sometime in 2012. (There are three Leland/Finn packs in the 12-pack case that includes him.)
The photo also shows Leland's license plate,
as revealed in the movie's closeup of his compacted remains (see below): 63 TRBO. Since
Leland's "official" model is a 1965, the 63 is another reference, possibly to the year Jason Isaacs, who voiced
Leland, was born. (Other license plates have referenced the birthdays of voice talent.)
Lego's "Compacted Leland Turbo"
Lego has produced
a "compacted" Leland as part of its "Oil Rig" playset! (Retail price is $49.99.) In Lego-world, Leland
is still alive; his little eyes are both sweet and creepy:
"Compacted Leland Turbo"...a
would Mattel produce a "Compacted Leland Turbo"? Here's what he might look like. The first image shows the package
seen in the video below it, which has been seen over 100,000 times on YouTube. (Beneath the first package is a completely
computer-generated version that was created before the "glamour shot" of Leland was released.)
to make your own Compacted Leland Turbo? Here's as good a method as any...and don't forget that piece of paper underneath!
The release of the Cars 2 DVD offers the chance to access the film's richly
detailed imagery. Here's a shot of the actual compacted Leland, which shows his license plate, and a mashup featuring a couple
of the brief full-length shots of Leland, whose visually distorted message to Finn so effectively accentuated his rounded
More Leland Trivia
is not only the first car you see in Cars 2, he's also the only one seen before the
Leland and Professor Z pronounce his name as "Lee-land"
but Finn pronounces it as "Lay-land."
When Professor Z is presented with Leland's
compacted remains, he announces Leland's name just before the cover is lifted to reveal
Leland had infiltrated the compound as an undercover agent (he mentions that his cover
had been compromised).
Leland's "flash transmission" is a play on words..."flashing"
an automobile's transmission reprograms its computer with software improvements.
According to the DVD commentary by director
John Lasseter, the film shows the sadism of the Lemons to identify them as truly dangerous and not just comically villainous.
either says that he is transmitting his "coords" or his "grids"; the movie's novelization and subtitles
say "grids," but online quote resources say "coords." Listen to his message at the top of this page...what
do you hear?