- Sandy Dunes: "How's our dust taste, city boy?"
Lightning McQueen: "Not as good as mine!"
- —Sandy and Lightning racing
Sandy is painted orange, and has blue eyes, and rear tires that are bigger than the front tires. He also has headlights on each side of his hood. His model is a Meyers Manx.
Sandy first appears in The Radiator Springs 500½, when he, Blue Grit, Idle Threat and Shifty Sidewinder hear that Lightning McQueen is the "fastest car in the west." They all travel to Radiator Springs, only to find him hosting the annual "Stanley Days" celebration while dressed up as Stanley. Immediately, Sandy and his pals make fun of Stanley, making McQueen decide to challenge them to a race.
Before the race starts, Mater tells them the course, saying to take a left off the main road, take a left again at a fork in the path where a herd of tractors are, over the rolling hills, past the Cool Pool of Tranquility, through the Taillight Caverns and Enchanted Forest, and back in Radiator Springs. The race starts well, and the racers soon come to the intersection where the tractors are. They all go down the right path, having got confused by Mater telling them that going left is right, actually meaning "correct". First, they come over bumpy hills rather than the rolling hills, before coming to a cliff. Sandy and his pals all stop before reaching the cliff, not believing that Stanley could have done anything like that, but they all go down the cliff when McQueen falls down. Next, they drive through a cactus patch, where Sandy gets pieces of cactus stuck on him. Before long, they head into the Tailpipe Caverns, where the tailpipes inside the caverns shoot out soot at all the racers. Finally, they come into a spooky forest, and notice many different corpses that spook them, causing them to rush back to Radiator Springs. Still not knowing that they took a different path during the race, Sandy comments that Stanley was "one tough customer."
Sandy is one of the playable characters in the mobile game Cars: Fast as Lightning, having been added in downloadable content that was released in October 2015 for the 1.3.0 update. To unlock him, players have to purchase him with gems. In the game, Sandy and his pals come to Radiator Springs to join McQueen's exhibition, which he says to Fillmore that he hopes his next races will be better than his previous race with McQueen during the "Stanley Days" celebration. Along with Blue Grit, Shifty and Idle, Sandy does not have his own race track like the other playable characters.