24 Best Car Racing Movies Of All Time: Ultimate List

24 Best Car Racing Movies Of All Time: Ultimate List

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What are the best car racing movies? You’re about to find out.

Movies are so sensational that it is famous in every aspect of our affair, including sport, basketball, tennis, and football, to athletics.

Great sports movies tell stories in the most inspirational way that future generations have not had the fortune of witnessing.

An example is the 2016 sports movie, which detailed the rise of Brazilian football legend Pele from poverty and obscurity to become the centerpiece of world football in the 20th century.

Also, do you remember the unbelievable and inspirational 1980 Miracle on Ice, dramatized in the 1981 movie of the same name?

We search through the world of cinematic wonders to present the top-10 racing movies of all time.

It’s important to note that not all these movies are focused on sports.

Some involve racing with a plot focused on action and the usual Hollywood adventures.

The Best Car Racing Movies Of All Time

1. Ford v Ferrari, 2019

In the world of automobiles, Ford and Ferrari rank as rivals, though the rivalry speaks more in favor of one party when it comes to prestige, eminence, and class.

This 2019 movie, which runs for about 2 hours, stars Hollywood wonderboys, Christian Bale and Matt Damon.

Set in the 1966 24 Hours of Le Mans, the movies focus on the Ford GT40 racing car, which was built to rival Ferrari’s success.

The plot shows the talent of late renowned British motorsports racer and engineer Ken Miles and his exploits for team Ford.

Movie enthusiasts can attest to the suspenseful and emotional tales it tells.

2. The Fast and The Furious, 2001

Who doesn’t know about the Fast & Furious franchise?

Probably those who live under a rock — kidding.

With eight installments, the franchise ranks as one of the very best in the world of theatrical wonders.

The movie has featured some of the most bankable stars globally, ranging from Vin Diesel to WWE’s very own superstar, Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson.

Before the widespread fame the franchise experienced, the first movie, The Fast and the Furious, released in 2001, proved to be one of the best racing movies ever.

The focus was on illegal street racing and the adventurous affairs of evading the inquisitive feds.

The entertaining fusion of racing, crime, and investigations earned its place on

3. Senna, 2011

A quick search of ‘Senna’ on google will reveal ‘Senna glycoside’, which you probably didn’t know about.

Well, that’s a medical jargon reserved for health professionals.

But the Senna this article focuses on is the movie which dramatizes the life and achievement of Ayrton Senna, a Brazilian Formula 1 driver who claimed three formula championships.

Way before Lewis Hamilton became a known name in F1, Ayrton Senna’s name reigned supreme.

In any conversation about Formula 1 greats, his name comes up.

A controversial driver, the film focuses on his rise to Formula One and his reaction to accidents in Formula 1.

One particular accident to note was the accident of Roland Ratzenberger and how he reacted to his death.

Sadly Senna died a day after his beloved friend lost his life in a fatal accident while doing what he passionately loved, racing.

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4. Days of Thunder, 1990

The 1990 racing movie focuses on one of America’s most popular car racing events, the NASCAR Daytona 500.

It features Hollywood sweetheart Tom Cruise who played the role of Cole Trickle, a young talented racer who has his eye set on winning the Indianapolis 500, a big deal in racing.

Cole never got his Indianapolis dream; he got something else as fate wanted it.

The movie gives insight into the struggles of young aspiring NASCAR drivers.

It also serves as a reminder to young racers.

Despite the discouragement resulting from the seemingly undefeatable challenges, success lies on the other side.

But you have to work for it.

5. Le Mans, 1971

The thrilling world of car racing may seem glamorous on the outside.

Still, the struggles, the accidents, and the psychological effects it has on racers speak extensively for more safety measures to be adopted in the sport.

This 1971 movie details the struggle of a racer Michael Delaney, who feels pangs of guilt over a rival racer’s death in an accident.

The film follows Delaney’s close-call with death and interaction with the widow of his late rival.

Indeed an eye-opener.

It’s sad to think that more talented drivers have suffered a similar fate after the release of this enlightening movie hit.

6. Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby, 2006

Numerous car racing movies denotes the dangers involved in the sport.

However, the thrills from racing with, of course, safety precautions adhered to are also clearly noted in several movies.

An example is the 2006 Talladega Nights, which provides a comic perspective to the world of motorsport racing, focusing on NASCAR.

It details the life of NASCAR racer Ricky Bobby, who rose to the top of his career to see everything come crashing.

The plots feature various comic performances in his quest to get back to the top.

7. Grand Prix, 1966

Focused on the four fictional Formula 1 drivers seeking to succeed, this 1966 movie also reveals how Formula 1 stars struggle to succeed.

It also carries the emotional tales of drivers who give their all to succeed, only for their lives to be cut short unexpectedly in racing accidents.

The racing movie’s cinematography solidifies its reputation as one of the very best car racing movies of All-Time.

Its success in 1966 saw it emerged as one of the most grossed movies of 1966.

The creativity of everyone who worked on this movie was rewarded after it was awarded three academy awards.

8. Rush, 2013

The 2013 movie details the rivalry between two of Formula 1 greats, three-time Formula 1 World Drivers’ Champion Niki Lauda from Austria, and his British counterpart, James Hunt.

Hunt won the 1976 Formula 1 World Drivers’ Championship.

The movie focuses on both drivers’ rivalry in the 1976 season.

It also reveals the very beginning of their competition and how they both ascended to Formula 1 glory, and the various path they chose in life.

It gives a real insight into the life of Formula superstars in the 1970s.

9. Winning, 1969

The 1969 movie focuses on the life of a NASCAR race driver who sets his ambitions on winning the Indianapolis 500.

His focus on the Indy’s lead to his negligence of his wife, who seeks attention elsewhere.

It gives us a peek into how the racing track’s life can be tumultuous for racers if not perfectly balanced.

10. The Cannonball Run

The 1981 comic movie features illegal car racing bounded by no rules and how racers cut corners to emerge victoriously.

The Cannonball Run is hilarious and filled with various schemes employed in evading law enforcement and mounting obstacles in opponents’ paths.

This movie was widely accepted in 1981 and ranked as one of the most grossed movies of 1981 at the box office.

The film inspired the 1984 movie of the same name and the 1989 movie Speed Zone.

Other Worthy Racing Movies Mentions

Hope you enjoyed our top picks of the best car racing movies of all time.

While our list above features only the top-ten, below are some worthy mentions.

  1. Williams, 2017
  2. McLaren, 2017
  3. Ferrari: Race to Immortality, 2017
  4. Cars, 2006
  5. Need for Speed, 2014
  6. Breaking Away, 1979
  7. The Love Bugs, 1968
  8. Speed Racer, 2008
  9. Logan Lucky, 2017
  10. Eat My Dust, 1976
  11. Seabiscuit, 2003
  12. Rat Race, 2001
  13. Death Race 2000, 1975
  14. Thunderbolt, 1995

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