Closing date announced for Test Track re-imagining at EPCOT

Test Track 2023
Concept art for one of Test Track’s new scènes (©Walt Disney Company)

During Destination D23 in 2023, it was revealed that EPCOT’s Test Track would close to be completely re-imagined for the third time in its lifetime. At the event in September 2023, no official closing date was given for the current version of the attraction. But this uncertainty has come to a halt after a post by Disney Parks on Facebook, announcing the ride’s closure and giving us a never before seen piece of concept art of the ride’s exterior.

The show building for Test Track originally housed World of Motion, a endless chain dark ride leading guests through the history of transportation. This ride was sponsored by General Motors, and would open in 1983. The ride was eventually closed in1996 due to GM feeling like a slow moving dark ride like World of Motion did not fit their brand. This would cause Disney’s Imagineers to create the first incarnation of Test Track.

Test Track eventually opened in 1999 after some delays. The ride made guests enter vehicles in a GM testing facility, with scenes being catered to testing the durability and power of GM cars. this included tests with a steep hill climb, rough roads, temperature changes and the speed test in the outdoors. Guests essentially acted as test dummies in this incarnation of the ride.

This version of the ride would last until April of 2012. Its sponsorship changed to GM’s Chevrolet brand of cars, with the entire theme of the ride becoming more futuristic. Guests now boarded a simulated car in a simulated environment. While the track layout didn’t change in this transition, many of the set pieces were removed in favor of a more stylized approach. This is the version of the ride people can experience until its new closing date.

Test Track Exterior 2023
The new concept art released by Disney (©Walt Disney Company)

New generation of Test Track

Test Track is scheduled to close on June 17, 2024, for a comprehensive theming overhaul. The new version of the ride will be inspired by World of Motion, the first version of Test Track. Not much concept art of the interior of the ride has been shown yet, but there has been speculation that the outdoor portion of the ride would become enclosed in this transformation, making Test Track a full dark ride. The release of new concept art, coinciding with the announcement of the closing date, has dispelled these rumors. The new image shows the exterior of the ride’s building, with the outdoor track still clearly visible, looping around the building as it has always done. The exterior of the building has changed significantly on the other hand, now sporting a more sleek and modern ‘TRON-like’ aesthetic compared to the iron beams found on the original facade, still reminiscent of the original incarnation.

No reopening date or additional information has been released as of yet. Last time, when the ride closed in April, it reopened eight months later, in December of the same year.