I personally think yes which is the reason he and McQueen switch every 30 mins, to swap.
Also, if you look at the front of mater and McQueen, you'll see two small black cameras. Maybe about a half inch in diameter, by headlights for mater and just inside i think for mcqueen. I presume the driver inside uses these to watch where he is going.
Also, if you look on the corners, you'll see red buttons. I'm assuming e-stop buttons for their handlers to hit if the car is about to hit something.
All this could be true with radio control but I think for safety and budget that there is a real person inside.
Yeah, I'm pretty sure there's a person in there. The way Mater and McQueen respond to guests/etc. makes me think that there's a live operator. I was there once when they were switching out and they were bantering back and forth.
There IS a person inside driving the cars. The CM's walking in front are communicating to the driver where to go. The banter comes from another CM who is standing a short distance away controlling the dialog with an Ipad.
I'd suspected that there was a CM in there driving and making the rocking/revving noises. I hope they have a/c in those cars, I mean there'd have to be ventilation so they don't overheat/suffocate. Couldn't be someone very big though. I'm 5'5 and it looks like it'd be a cramped ride in there.
Still, how cool would that be? You'd drive around as one of the cars and then get to walk around the park afterward in complete anonymity.