Doc Hudson is a major character in Disney and Pixar's Cars and a posthumous character in Cars 3.
He was voiced by the late Paul Newman.
Doc Hudson was a retired racing car and resident in Radiator Springs. He also acted as a mentor and coach for Lightning McQueen until his death.
Hudson first appears when he has to judge Lightning for the damage he caused in the town the night before. Seeing the racer, he wants to expel him without delay but Sally convinces him to have the road repaired by McQueen to his annoyance.
Lightning later sympathizes with the residents, which displeases Hudson. The racer then discovers a warehouse where several Piston Cups won by Hudson are placed and the latter gets angry and asks Lightning to leave the place. The racer runs to tell the others who don't believe him, Hudson sadly watching his revelation.
The old car then heads to Willy's Butt to ride on his old competition tires, impressing Lightning, but Hudson ignores him and drives away. Upon entering the warehouse, he confronts Lightning and tells him about the accident that caused him to stop running. In the evening, Hudson is the one who contacts RSN who picks up McQueen for his race, to the great sadness of the inhabitants and especially Sally.
Realizing his mistake, he also went to California with the others and acted as Lightning's technical director for the race. He was quickly recognized by the public, the pit crews and the cameras turned to him. Doc witnesses the King's crash to Chick Hicks and Lightning, reminiscing about his mentor's crash and sets off to help the veteran cross the finish line. At the end, he congratulates Lightning and rolls over Willy's Butt with him during the end credits.
Hudson unfortunately dies between the first and second film, and a statuette with his image is presented by Lightning to Mater.
Cars 3In this film, Doc has a rather important posthumous role. In the past, as a racer, he had a trainer named Smokey that Lightning meets with Cruz Ramirez. Hudson's mentor shows a cabin with letters written by the late racer on Radiator Springs and his best times with Lightning. At the end of the film, Lighting becomes Cruz's mentor and dyes his body the same color as Doc, in his honor.