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Mattel Disney Pixar CARS: The Real & Diecast Galloping Geargrinder

In the real world – early autos converted to run on track tracks were called the Galloping Geese …


The Galloping Geese were built by the Rio Grande Southern shops in Ridgway, with very little means and a lot of ingenuity, from whatever material was available, spare car parts and other used parts. There are several hypothesis regarding the origin of the weird unofficial nickname (Galloping Goose) of the Motors. One of them claims that the name came from the waddling of the Geese on the uneven Rio Grande Southern track, another attributed the nickname to the goose-like honk of the horn of the Motors, very different from the usual whistle of steam engines. All the Geese have survived until now, except one (of which a replica has been built). Among the survivors, all but one are operational and are used occasionally on the loop track of the Colorado Railroad Museum, on the Cumbres & Toltec or on the Durango & Silverton.”

You can read more at this site on the Rio Grande Southern Railroad – thanks for the heads up, “David V!”

Of course, in CARS World, there was the Galloping Geargrinder, one of the nicest surprise releases late in 2012 on the Porto Corsa cards … and of course, with somewhat limited distribution.

Thanks for the nice photos, John H. – next to Lizzie on a HO scale track piece.


John H says it’s doesn’t quite fit but on the HO scale track but it looks pretty good.


I believe this vehicle sets the CARS diecast record for most accessories? Great detailing on all the tools and lantern – especially the lantern and what’s nice is it’s removeable even after you hang it on the hook.


They all fit nicely into the barrel. The red gas tanks/water tanks are not removeable.


Thanks for the great pics, John H. and thanks for the heads up on the railroad info, David V!  Galloping-Geargrinder-front_02

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  • Mack_me_Bucko says:

    I was thrilled when I saw the GGG in the theatre, since I immediately knew it was based on RGS #1, which had been built from a Buick truck. I am a long time narrow gauge railway nut, and have been all over the remains of the RGS, ridden in a few “geese” at the Colorado Railroad Museum, and modeled them as well. The folks at Pixar are always accurate, and I bet there is a closet RGS fan there as well.

  • BMW says:

    My son is sure the GGG is not a mail car.

  • danrio says:

    Great article !! Thanks Met ! And John ! And David !

    It’s good to know the “roots” of some of the Cars characters. It’s also great to know that John Lasseter and his Pixar group spent some time researching even the most obscure characters and, in this case, from one of the shorts !

  • jestrjef says:

    OK, I must say I love the TRACK!!! what scale is that?!?!?

    • John in Missouri says:

      Met said it is HO Scale.

      • jestrjef says:

        Thanks! I was distracted by the purty pictures and didn’t see that squeezed in there.

      • Mack_me_Bucko says:

        Even better! Since our Mattel ‘Cars’ are 1:55 scale, and the real Rio Grande Southern “geese” ran on railroad track that was gauged to 36″ wide; here’s the conversion math:

        36″ (real RGS track) divided by 55 (our scale) equals .6545″

        .6545″ times 87 (HO scale) equals 57″ — and that should be 56.5″ for a standard gauge railroad track — so using HO track in 1:55 is within a micro-fraction of being correct in 1:55 scale!

  • MackDaddy says:

    Always entertaining and informative! Thanks Met! 😀

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