OK, what's the point of a 'game'? Might seem a daft question but to my mind the answer is to 'have fun'.
It's slick, colourful, relates very well to the film and the game play is quite varied (racing, attack the baddies, slalom etc). All the characters are in there, complete with original voice actors. There are also progress 'unlocks' to keep it interesting and after months of use, there is still a long way to go to 'finish' it.
So there you go - it's fun so it serves its purpose.
However, to be critical - the sound is off (delayed or mis-aligned samples) and the controls are a bit strange for an experienced 'gamer'.
Does this affect the game play enjoyment of my 4 year old? Not one jot. He loves it. See the first sentence!
I bought this for my 9 year old sisters birthday after weeks of begging. I believed that she would play it for a couple of hours get bored of it and put it in the cupboard not to be seen for many years. However after half an hour she, my brother, the next door neighbour and I were all playing together this coninued for several hours until she had to go to bed.
One of the great features of the game is that you can do everything with up to four players meaning that we didn't have to wait for ages until good quality mutiplayer levels were unlocked (as in some previous Disney games). It created healthy competition between us and kept us hooked throughout.
Its great fun for all ages, with not just simple racing modes but with others, such as hunter where you hunt down the "baddie" cars using weapons which you collect from Mario Kartesque item boxes. In the races you can do tricks to boost the turbo bar which I think make the game more beautiful to watch.
I found the wheel response excellent and it involves you in the driving making you feel that you are the character (of which there are many) you control.
The graphics are good for the wii and will please any avid Cars fan with extreme detail on the cars striaght from the film. As well most of the Cars are voiced by the original actors from the movie (major exceptions being Fin McMissle and Lightning McQueen). It's good that the game is based on but not strict to the film, this gives a strong relation to it but makes sure that playing game is not just the same as replaying the film.
The game overall feels alot like Mario Kart with Cars characters but this does not take away the pleasure of the game and there are modes which are not in Mario Kart which can be played if you are Mario Karted out.
My boys (aged 8 and 5) play this game whenever they get the opportunity. The game is extremely good fun, can be played solo or with friends/parents and without any stress about reaching the next level or figuring out what you are supposed to do. We would highly recommend it.
There are other Mario Kart like games out there, but this is certainly one of the best. With plenty of features, complex tracks (with shortcuts), and some features (fancy jumps, 2 wheel driving, etc) that Mario Kart doesn't have. I was surprised at the quality of this game and would recommend it to those who already own Mario Kart and want something similar but new. If you don't have Mario Kart I'd recommend you get them both!
I purchased this game for my son for Christmas as he loves Cars 2 ever since he saw it at the cinema and wanted me to get it for him. He loves playing with the game and getting to know all the different characters from the film.
That game was a nightmare to play at times and frustrating for a child. This one, as has been pointed out, is more in the mario kart mould and works well for it. The training mode is fun and failing to meet the trophy standards ends up pushing you for that "one more go, I can do this" response. The multi player is good fun and very mario kart in style, for example the battle mode and works well for all ages.
The only reason I would not give it 5 stars is there is one annoying glitch in the game, there is a move that allows you to flip the car to drive on its side, the way to do this is push forward. Unfortunately, as can be guessed, that is a move it is easy to make by accident and once you're on your side cornering is a nightmare and sitting back down only seems to respond half the time. So you can find a good lap ruined by that one glitch. But it isn't so bad it ruins the game.