Mario Kart Wii (JP) (also called MKW or MKWii) is a multiplayer-oriented racing video game for the Wii home console, released in 2008, and developed by Nintendo EAD. It is the sixth main installment in the Mario Kart series and the tenth overall. The game comes packaged with a plastic steering wheel known as the Wii Wheel, which the Wii Remote can be inserted into, arguably making the gameplay seem familiar to Mario Kart Arcade GP. However, if the player wishes, they can also use the Wii Remote with the Nunchuk, with the Classic Controller, with the GameCube Controller, or just on its side without the shell at all, resembling the control options of Super Smash Bros. Brawl for the Wii. Mario Kart Wii is second most popular game on Nintendo Wii, making it the most popular Mario game on Wii. Mario Kart Wii retains the traditional item-based weaponry familiar with the franchise, where players can select a Mario series driver and themed vehicles.

As with most racing games, the overarching goal is to place first among other competitors, through the usage of such items and taking the fastest routes to secure the leads. Several new key elements introduced to Mario Kart Wii include increasing the number of racers to 12 racers from 8 racers from the previous entries in the series, as well as introducing a new type of vehicle to the franchise: bikes.

This game requires 23 blocks of storage on the player's Wii system to save game data. Also, the game data cannot be copied onto another Wii. The game also includes its own Wii Channel, called the Mario Kart Channel, which allows players to play in special tournaments and trade their racing profile with other players around the world. This channel uses 74 to 88 blocks (depending on the game's region), but unlike the game data, players can copy the channel onto their SD cards.

With over 37 million copies of the game sold, Mario Kart Wii is the second best-selling Wii game (after Wii Sports) and the best-selling Mario game for the Wii console.[1]

Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection was terminated by Nintendo starting on May 20th, 2014, therefore making it no longer available to play Mario Kart Wii (as well as Mario Kart DS and other games that support WFC) online, except by using third-party servers.[2]


Mario Kart Wii retains most of the elements from the previous Mario Kart games, especially Mario Kart DS. Players select a racer from a cast of Mario characters, who are all divided into size categories in relation to their stats, and they need to select a vehicle from the class they belong in, all with their own stats. All races start with players at a line corresponding to their proper position, where Lakitu signals the countdown time. Once the time is finished, players race three laps around a race course in an attempt to be first of the pack. Once the third lap is completed, players are ranked points depending on how well they placed in the race. While every previous Mario Kart game allowed for a maximum of eight racers on each course, up to twelve are on the course at a time in Mario Kart Wii. In Grand Prix and VS. Mode, player characters always start out on the latter positions; once they finish the race, their position is saved as they move on to the next race. Like Mario Kart: Super Circuit and Mario Kart DS, Mario Kart Wii shows a rating of how well a player performed after the trophy presentation: ★★★, ★★, ★, A, B, C, D, and E (E being the lowest ranking and ★★★ being the highest).

Integral to the Mario Kart series is the usage of Mario-themed items to use as weapons against other racers in the track, either directly benefiting the player or hurting another player's progress. Players can receive these items at random from Item Boxes scattered around the track. The quality of the item received depends on the position of the racer: racers who are further down the line receive stronger items to help compensate their poorer performances. For examples, lower racers receive Mushrooms as speed boosts, Stars for faster invincibility, etc. while higher-placed racers receive weak items such as Green Shells and Banana Peels. When players receive an item, they can stop the item roulette faster by pressing the corresponding item button.

Several advanced techniques are retained in Mario Kart Wii from prior Mario Kart titles, although several tweaks have been made to them. Players can drift through tougher curves to maintain speed; players can perform a Mini-Turbo when players receive color-coded sparks from drifting, which depends on how long players can hold the button for drifting and the angle at which they drift. Introduced in Mario Kart Wii are two drift modes: Automatic and Manual. Automatic drifting allows players to automatically drift when turning very sharply, though players cannot perform Mini-Turbos regardless of how well they drift. Manual mode requires players hold down a button to drift, but releasing the button may release a Mini-Turbo, the strength of it depending on the color of the sparks. Players are now able to perform tricks when they driver over specific types of ramps. When drivers perform a trick and land successfully, they gain a momentary boost of speed. Tricks consist of mid-air acrobatics and are performed by shaking the Wii Wheel upward, shaking the Wii Remote in the Wii Remote + Nunchuk combo, pressing the Pad on the Classic Controller or GameCube controller.

Motorbikes are introduced in this game, alongside having a wider variety of karts to select from. Motorbikes can perform wheelies to increase top speed on straights, though motorbikes cannot perform the most powerful Mini-Turbo that karts can. Motorbikes also come in two classes: drift type and hang-on type. Drift type bikes drift in a similar way to karts, while hang-on type bikes commit to the turn instead.

Prior to the discontinuation of online services, Mario Kart Wii featured a text chat in Online Multiplayer Mode when racing or battling against Friends. Users can send pre-written phrases to other users before the series of races starts. However, there is no facility for a user to type custom messages[3].

Another new change is the point system used for Grand Prix races. With twelve racers competing in each race, the point value has increased from 10/8/6/4/3/2/1/0 points for first to eighth place respectively to 15/12/10/8/7/6/5/4/3/2/1/0 points for first to twelfth place respectively. Also, 4th and 5th place are not losing positions. The following chart shows the difference of the point spreads from previous games to this installment.

Point Spread Comparisons (GP)
1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th 7th 8th 9th 10th 11th 12th
Super Mario Kart
Mario Kart 64
Mario Kart: Super Circuit
9 6 3 1 0 0 0 0
Mario Kart: Double Dash!!
Mario Kart DS
10 8 6 4 3 2 1 0
Mario Kart Wii 15 12 10 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1 0
Grove-green bg signifies victory results (great clapping, character(s) cheering), best after-race music
Yellow-limegreen bg signifies moderate results (mild clapping, moderate character reaction), same music in Wi-Fi as winner (different in MKDS GP)
Normal bg signifies losing results, losing music; - means not available
In Super Mario Kart, and Mario Kart Super Circuit, 5th or worse forces the player to retry the race. If the racer fares this badly four times, the Grand Prix must be started over. In Mario Kart 64, 5th or worse forces the player to retry the race, but without the restrictions on how many times the player can retry a race. In Mario Kart: Double Dash and other installments after that game including this installment, the Grand Prix normally goes forth.

Wii Wheel

Main article: Wii Wheel

When Mario Kart Wii was revealed at E3 2007 of 2007, Reggie Fils-Aime also showed off the Wii Wheel, which would, at the game's release, come packaged with the game in an enlarged box. The wheel could also be sold separately if one wished to play in a multiplayer match with everyone using wheels.

With the Wii Wheel, the player will have to place the Wii remote inside of it, where it is stationed on its side. During races, the player can twist the wheel left and right to turn in the corresponding directions, similar to how you would in an arcade racing game (or even more specifically - Mario Kart Arcade GP).

If players use the Wii Wheel a lot, then a golden image of the Wii Wheel will be placed next to their avatar while playing online.


Wii Wheel

  • Accelerate: Hold 2 Button.
  • Rocket start: Hold 2 Button when Lakitu's traffic light goes middle or when the countdown is 2.
  • Steer: Turn Wii Wheel left/right.
  • Use item: Click on Control Pad (up/bottom).
  • Look behind: Hold A Button.
  • Trick: Move the wheel in any direction when in the air.
  • Drift: Hold B Button.
  • Mini-Turbo (CAN ONLY BE PERFORMED IN MANUAL): Hold B Button.
  • Brake: Hold B Button or 1 Button.
  • Reverse: Hold B Button or 1 Button.
  • Pause: Touch + Button.
  • Wheelie (CAN BE PERFORMED WHEN RIDING A BIKE): Move the wheel up.
  • Home Menu: Touch Home Button (blue house).

Wii Remote and Nunchuk

  • Accelerate: Hold A Button.
  • Rocket start: Hold A Button when Lakitu's traffic light goes middle or when the countdown is 2.
  • Steer: Move Control Stick (similar to analog stick) left/right.
  • Use item: Touch Z Button.
  • Look Behind: Hold C Button.
  • Trick: Move the remote in any direction when in the air.
  • Drift: Hold B Button.
  • Reverse: Hold B Button.
  • Brake: Hold B Button.
  • Pause: Touch + Button.
  • Wheelie (CAN BE PERFORMED WHEN RIDING A BIKE): Move the remote in any direction.
  • Mini-Turbo (CAN BE PERFORMED IN MANUAL): Hold B Button.
  • Home Menu: Touch Home Button (blue house).

Classic Controller

  • Accelerate: Hold a Button.
  • Rocket Start: Hold a Button when Lakitu's traffic light goes middle or when the countdown is 2.
  • Steer: Move L Stick.
  • Use Item: Touch L Button.
  • Look behind: Hold x Button or ZR Button.
  • Trick: Touch Control Pad in any direction when on the air.
  • Drift: Hold b Button or R Button.
  • Reverse: Hold b or R Button.
  • Brake: Hold b/R Button.
  • Pause: Touch + or Start Button.
  • Wheelie: (CAN BE PERFORMED WHEN RIDING A BIKE): Press up on Control Pad.
  • Mini-Turbo (CAN BE PERFORMED IN MANUAL): Hold b/R Button.
  • HOME menu: Touch blue house button.

Nintendo GameCube Controller

  • Accelerate: Hold green A Button.
  • Rocket Start: Hold green A Button when Lakitu's traffic light goes middle/when the countdown is 2.
  • Steer: Move Control Stick left/right.
  • Use item: Touch L Button.
  • Look behind: Hold X/Z Button.
  • Trick: Press Control Pad in any direction when floating in the air.
  • Drift: Hold red B/R Button.
  • Reverse: Hold red B/R Button.
  • Brake: Hold red B/grey R Button.
  • Pause: Click Pause/Start Button.
  • Wheelie (CAN BE PERFORMED WHEN RIDING A BIKE): Press up on Control Pad.
  • Mini-Turbo (CAN BE PERFORMED IN MANUAL): Hold red R/B Button.
  • Home Menu: You cannot do this.

Game modes

  • Grand Prix (1 player) In this mode, the player races against eleven other CPU players to finish in first. There are eight cups to choose from, ranging from the most to the least difficult. Drivers earn points by placing within twelve positions. A driver with the most points at the end of the four races wins the cup. The driver will be awarded a grade for their racing performance at the end of the cup. Grand Prix Mode initially allows only Karts in 50cc and only Bikes in 100cc; if all the Grand Prix's are won in a single engine class, the other vehicle type will become available for it. Mirror Mode is unlocked by scoring first place on all 150cc Grand Prix.
  • Time Trial (1 player) Drivers race for the fastest time on a selected course. The fastest record is saved as a Ghost and can be raced against at a later time. Drivers can also race staff records, Regional Records/Champions, World Records/Champions (Wi-Fi must be used), and Friend Records (Friend must be registered and must send the Ghost for Ghost Races, and Wi-Fi also must be used.)
  • VS Race (1 to 4 players, up to 12 online) Drivers can race with their own custom settings, but it is otherwise relatively the same as Grand Prix, other than the fact that drivers can see the other racers' character's names. The driver may choose a Solo Race, where they try to win for themselves, or Team Race, where two teams, red and blue, try to win by gathering the most points and beating the other.
  • Battle (1 to 4 players, up to 12 online) Drivers team up in two teams of six in a battle for the most points within a 3 minute time limit. Items work only against the opposite team and have no effect on the team that uses them. Players can select only the Standard Kart or Bike, color-coded for the team they are on. There are two ways to battle:
    • Balloon Battle: All drivers get three balloons and must use the items to hit the opponents to pop their balloons and get one point for every hit. If drivers lose all their balloons, one point is deducted and remain out for a while to be brought back to the battle with three balloons once more.
    • Coin Runners: The goal for drivers is to obtain more Coins with their team than the other. In the top right corner of the screen, the score shows, which are the Coins obtained altogether for each team. If drivers hit opponents, opponents drop their Coins. The number of coins dropped depends on the item that hits the player and the number of Coins that the player has already gathered.
  • Ghost Race (Mario Kart Channel, 1 player) A Time Trial race with Ghosts made by players around the world with relatively the same skill level to the actual player.
  • Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection (Up to 12 players) Mario Kart Wii is the second Mario Kart to support online play (since Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection shutdown in 2014, online play is no longer possible unless modding). Mario Kart Wii brings a bigger online mode. In this mode, you can play in worldwide mode, regional mode, and Friend's mode. It introduced Mario Kart Channel, which is a channel for your Wii which most of its functions is used with Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection. You can also participate in tournaments (No longer possible due to Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection shutdown unless modding), which you try getting the most score. Tournaments include, get all the Coins on track as fast as you can, and more. You can receive message's on Wii message board about new tournaments if you clicked on the bottom gray button as soon as it says 'Receive Mario Kart Wii Messages?' on the Mario Kart Channel. In the Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection mode, you can play 2 player splitscreen on the same Wii console while playing online. When you select either Worldwide, Regional, and Friends, you then get sent to the character select screen. Then you select your kart, just like in the offline mode. However, instead of choosing the track and getting in the race, players must vote for their track and the game will automatically chose which track to race in randomly once all players voted. When finishing a race online, you can earn and lose VR points. To earn them, you must get 5th place or higher. To lose them, you must get lower than 5th place. The goal is to try getting as much as VR points as you can, until you reached 9999 points. Players can also post their best time trail ghosts and records using Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection on the Mario Kart Channel. On February 26, 2014, Nintendo announced that they will shutdown Nintendo WFC servers on May 20, 2014. Meaning it's no longer possible to play Nintendo Wii games including Mario Kart Wii, Online in Nintendo's servers. However, 10 days before shutdown, a player named 'Wiimm' released 'Wiimmfi'. Which brings back online access to Wii games. The game the service mainly focused on was Mario Kart Wii. Link to tutorial on how to get Wiimmfi on your Wii:

Other information

  1. Additionally, in this game, both normal races and battles are playable online through the use of Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection. This is the second game in the series to utilize the WFC, the third to support online connectivity, and the first to allow for online battles. Races and Battles will now cater up to 12 players via Wi-Fi Connection.
  2. Just like in Mario Kart DS, it is not possible to play Grand Prix with multiple players. Players can now only win cup trophies by playing alone.
  3. In Battle Mode, the player can only play in teams. Also, the Spiny Shell makes its first appearance in Battle Mode. It chases the player of the opposite team with the most points. Also, Lightning is an item in Battle Mode. It shrinks the drivers of the opposite team and makes them lose their items, but does not take a balloon or drop Coins.

The varieties of tournaments include the following:

  • VS. Race - A standard VS race; however, race courses were somewhat altered.
  • Time Trial - A standard Time Trial; however, race courses were somewhat altered.
  • Numbered Gates - The player had to drive through ordered gates as fast as possible.
  • Coin Collecting - The player had to collect the coins on the stage as fast as possible.
  • Boss Battle - The player had to fight against a special boss.


Licenses replace normal save files. It is the first Mario Kart game to feature more than one save file. Each license contains each player's data, their Mii, nickname, Friend Code, and a table including all categories and cups with an empty space. After a cup is won, the corresponding space is filled in with a colored square: gold for first place, silver for second, bronze for third. If at any time the Mii being used for Mario Kart Wii is deleted from the Mii Channel, the in-game Mii is also deleted.

Friend roster

Players can add different people around the world on to their Mario Kart Wii Friend Roster. Two people need to add the Friend Codes on their licenses. A player can have up to 30 people on their Friend Roster.

If two people are friends on a roster, one can open a room, which allows who is ever friends with the person to join that room. In the room, the players who joined can send messages. If a player who added the person who created the room, and another person joins and the player has not added them, they have an ability to do so. The host of the room can choose a VS. Race, Team VS. Race, Balloon Battle, and Coin Runners.

If a player joins a race when another player is online and friends with them, the player who added the player in the race can join that race and race with the friend.


Mario Kart Wii features 12 starting characters, while 14 (if both Mii outfits are counted as separate characters) more can be unlocked for a total of 26 playable characters. Unlike with the past Mario Kart titles, however, the characters are categorized under a size class system, instead of the usual weight class system. Excluding the Mii, each size class has 8 characters, making Mario Kart Wii the only game in the Mario Kart series where the weight/size classes have an equal amount of characters, if including Shy Guy from Mario Kart DS. Characters in bold are newly introduced to this game. The weight classes of the Miis are determined on their stats in the Mii Channel, and thus can be adjusted.

The size classes are as follows:

  • Small: Small drivers will drive small vehicles. They usually have good acceleration, handling, and off-road stats, but low top speed and weight.
  • Medium: Medium drivers will drive medium-sized vehicles. Most of the karts show average weight and off-road.
  • Large: Large drivers will drive large vehicles. They mostly feature high top speed and weight, but low acceleration, handling, and off-road.
Image Name Weight Unlock
Baby Mario Light -
Baby Luigi Light Unlock 8 expert Staff Ghosts or win 100 WFC races.
Baby Peach Light -
Baby Daisy Light Get Star Rank for all Nitro Cups in 50cc.
Toad Light -
Toadette Light Play all courses in Time Trials or win 1000 WFC races.
Koopa Troopa Light -
Dry Bones Light Win Leaf Cup in 100cc.
Mario Middle -
Luigi Middle -
Peach Middle -
Daisy Middle Win Special Cup in 150cc.
Yoshi Middle -
Birdo Middle Play half of 32 (16) courses in Time Trials or win 250 WFC races.
Diddy Kong Middle Win Lightning Cup in 50cc.
Bowser Jr. Middle Get Star Rank for all Retro Cups in 100cc.
Wario Heavy -
Waluigi Heavy -
Donkey Kong Heavy -
Bowser Heavy -
King Boo Heavy Win Star Cup in 50cc.
Rosalina Heavy Have a save file from Super Mario Galaxy and play 50 races or get Star Rank for all Cups in Mirror Mode.
Funky Kong Heavy Unlock 4 Expert Staff Ghosts or win 25 WFC (Ghost) races.
Dry Bowser Heavy Get Star Rank for all Nitro Cups in 150cc.
Mii Outfit A Light, Middle, Heavy Win Special Cup in 100cc.
Mii Outfit B Light, Middle, Heavy Unlock all 32 Expert Staff Ghosts, win 5000 WFC/Ghost races or win over 5100 races and battles.



Mushroom Cup

Flower Cup

Star Cup

Special Cup
Luigi Circuit Mario Circuit Daisy Circuit Dry Dry Ruins
Moo Moo Meadows Coconut Mall Koopa Cape Moonview Highway
Mushroom Gorge DK Summit (NTSC)
DK's Snowboard Cross (PAL)
Maple Treeway Bowser's Castle
Toad's Factory Wario's Gold Mine

Grumble Volcano

Rainbow Road

Shell Cup

Banana Cup

Leaf Cup

Lightning Cup
GCN Peach Beach N64 Sherbet Land DS Desert Hills SNES Mario Circuit 3
DS Yoshi Falls GBA Shy Guy Beach GBA Bowser Castle 3 DS Peach Gardens
SNES Ghost Valley 2 DS Delfino Square N64 DK's Jungle Parkway GCN DK Mountain
N64 Mario Raceway GCN Waluigi Stadium GCN Mario Circuit N64 Bowser's Castle

Battle Arenas


Wii Stages

Retro Stages
Block Plaza SNES Battle Course 4
Delfino Pier GBA Battle Course 3
Funky Stadium N64 Skyscraper
Chain Chomp Wheel GCN Cookie Land
Thwomp Desert DS Twilight House


Ghosts a.k.a. Staff Ghosts also appear in this game. There are over 30 Staff Ghosts. Each of Nintendo's Ghosts are represented by Miis. Medium-difficulty Ghosts appear at first, but Expert-difficulty variations can be unlocked if the easier one is defeated.


Track Staff Name Country Time Character Karts or Bikes Controller Drift mode?

Luigi Circuit

Nin★sato Japan 1.29.670 Luigi Sprinter Wii Wheel Automatic
Moo Moo Meadows Nin★YuNya Japan 1.37.856 Baby Daisy Booster Seat Wii Wheel Automatic
Mushroom Gorge Nin★Murak Japan 2.16.110 Toadette Quacker Wii Wheel Manual
Toad's Factory Nin★Misa Japan 2.22.480 Toad Jet Bubble Wii Wheel Manual

Mario Circuit

Nin★=Kony Japan 1.44.777 Mario Zip Zip Wii Wheel Manual
Coconut Mall Nin★♪SiMO Japan 2.30.764 Daisy Sugarscoot Wii Remote + Nunchuk Manual
DK Summit Nin★mokke Japan 2.34.693 Donkey Kong Standard Bike L Wii Wheel Manual
Wario's Gold Mine Nin★morimo Japan 2.19.585 Wario Wario Bike Wii Wheel Manual
Daisy Circuit Nin★Toki Japan 1.56.822 Daisy Daytripper GameCube Manual
Koopa Cape Nin★Rose Japan 3.03.022 Koopa Troopa Cheep Charger Wii Remote + Nunchuk Manual
Maple Treeway Nin★pico Japan 2.58.633 Diddy Kong Classic Dragster Wii Wheel Manual
Grumble Volcano Nin★Gorin Japan 2.28.237 Dry Bowser Offroader Wii Wheel Manual
Dry Dry Ruins Nin★Kei Japan 2.30.949 Yoshi Classic Dragster Wii Wheel Manual
Moonview Highway Nin★KOZ★ Japan 2.16.802 Peach Standard Kart M Wii Wheel Manual
Bowser's Castle Nin★YABUKI Japan 3.04.836 Bowser Piranha Prowler GameCube Manual
Rainbow Road Nin★Konno Japan 3.05.895 Rosalina Shooting Star Wii Remote + Nunchuk Manual
GCN Peach Beach Nin★HIRO Japan 1.34.233 Peach Daytripper Wii Remote + Nunchuk Manual
DS Yoshi Falls Nin★DoTak Japan 1.16.461 Yoshi Zip Zip Wii Remote + Nunchuk Manual
SNES Ghost Valley 2 Nin★YOKO. Japan 1.06.595 King Boo Standard Kart L Wii Wheel Manual
N64 Mario Raceway Nin★Ichiro Japan 2.14.799 Baby Mario Bit Bike Wii Wheel Manual
N64 Sherbet Land Nin★Sakat Japan 2.48.651 Baby Luigi Quacker Wii Wheel Automatic
GBA Shy Guy Beach Nin★Kato Japan 1.45.568 Koopa Troopa Cheep Charger Wii Wheel Manual
DS Delfino Square Nin★iwaco Japan 2.41.807 Wario Wario Bike Wii Wheel Manual
GCN Waluigi Stadium Nin★NARI★ Japan 2.32.882 Waluigi Standard Bike L Wii Remote + Nunchuk Manual
DS Desert Hills Nin★CHIA Japan 2.10.233 Dry Bones Standard Bike S Wii Remote + Nunchuk Manual
GBA Bowser Castle 3 Nin★Fukuda Japan 2.58.304 Dry Bowser Standard Kart L Wii Wheel Manual
N64 DK's Jungle Parkway Nin★Matt Japan 2.58.264 Donkey Kong Phantom Wii Wheel Automatic
GCN Mario Circuit Nin★♪Miz Japan 1.59.771 Mario Standard Bike M Wii Wheel Manual
SNES Mario Circuit 3 Nin★iwaco Japan 1.38.880 Baby Mario Standard Kart S Wii Wheel Manual
DS Peach Gardens Nin★Ito.y Japan 2.34.894 Baby Peach Magikruiser Wii Wheel Manual
GCN DK Mountain Nin★♪msk Japan 2.57.744 Funky Kong Wario Bike Wii Wheel Manual
N64 Bowser's Castle Nin★GASK2 Japan 3.19.323 Bowser Jr. Standard Kart M Wii Wheel Manual


Track: Staff Name: Time: Character: Karts or Bikes: Controller: Drift Mode?:
Luigi Circuit Nin★Uta♪ 1.19.419 Luigi Mach Bike Wii Wheel Manual
Moo Moo Meadows Nin★Tkym 1.25.909 Baby Daisy Bullet Bike Other Automatic
Mushroom Gorge Nin★Miki 2.01.011 Toadette Concerto

Mini Beast

Other Manual
Toad's Factory Nin★GQO 2.05.593 Toad Blue Falcon Other Manual
Mario Circuit Nin★fuyu 1.33.702 Mario Sprinter Other Manual
Coconut Mall Nin★MUGI★ 2.13.333 Daisy Wild Wing Wii Wheel Manual
DK Summit Nin★KOZ★ 2.17.546 Donkey Kong Flame Flyer Wii Wheel Manual
Wario's Gold Mine Nin★♪Ryo 2.04.800 Wario Flame Flyer Other Manual
Daisy Circuit Nin★Taeko 1.41.362 Daisy Mach Bike Other Manual
Koopa Cape Nin★morimo 2.41.370 Koopa Troopa Jet Bubble Other Manual
Maple Treeway Nin★MUGI★ 2.37.812 Diddy Kong Sneakster Other Manual
Grumble Volcano Nin★aki 2.11.852 Dry Bowser Spear Other Manual
Dry Dry Ruins Nin★Akito 2.14.286 Yoshi Sneakster Wii Wheel Manual
Moonview Highway Nin★Koh 2.04.163 Peach Mach Bike Wii Wheel Manual
Bowser's Castle Nin★Masa 2.42.098 Bowser Flame Runner Other Manual
Rainbow Road Nin★Syun1 2.44.734 Rosalina Jetsetter Other Manual
GCN Peach Beach Nin★Taeko 1.23.140 Peach Dolphin Dasher Wii Wheel


DS Yoshi Falls Nin★FJ 1.09.175 Yoshi Super Blooper Wii Wheel Manual
SNES Ghost Valley 2 Nin★sira〉 0.58.907 King Boo Spear Other Manual
N64 Mario Raceway Nin★Yuuki 1.59.053 Baby Mario Mini Beast Other Manual
N64 Sherbet Land Nin★FJ 2.28.356 Baby Luigi Blue Falcon Other Manual
GBA Shy Guy Beach Nin★Matt 1.32.867 Koopa Troopa Magikruiser Other Manual
DS Delfino Square Nin★TARO 2.24.169 Wario Honeycoupe Other Manual
GCN Waluigi Stadium Nin★♪Ryo 2.12.367 Waluigi Piranha Prowler Other Manual
DS Desert Hills Nin★solami 1.52.686 Dry Bones Tiny Titan Wii Wheel Manual
GBA Bowser Castle 3 Nin★A24 2.39.391 Dry Bowser Flame Runner Other Manual
N64 DK's Jungle Parkway Nin★Syun1 2.37.782 Donkey Kong Flame Flyer Wii Wheel Manual
GCN Mario Circuit Nin★Dai8 1.49.939 Mario Wild Wing Other Manual
SNES Mario Circuit 3 Nin★Shige 1.26.659 Baby Mario Bullet Bike Other Manual
DS Peach Gardens Nin★=Kony 2.16.777 Baby Peach Mini Beast Wii Wheel Manual
GCN DK Mountain Nin★Miyam 2.38.130 Funky Kong Flame Flyer Wii Wheel Manual
N64 Bowser's Castle Nin★Kentan 2.55.933 Bowser Jr. Sneakster Wii Wheel Manual

World Records

Over time, various players from various areas have set world records on each course in the game. Here is a list of the current records (as of January 8, 2020)

Course Time Player Name Nation Date
Luigi Circuit 01:08.774 Cole Canada November 26, 2019
Moo Moo Meadows 01:15.483 Sosis United States November 2, 2019
Mushroom Gorge 00:21.003 Bryce United States October 17, 2019
Toad's Factory 01:45.272 Logan United States January 2, 2020
Mario Circuit 00:49.092 Bryce United States July 2, 2019
Coconut Mall 00:31.481 Braixen United States July 7, 2019
DK Summit 01:45.629 Connor United States June 16, 2018
Wario's Gold Mine 00:32.322 McRaren Japan December 8, 2019
Daisy Circuit 01:28.425 Luke United Kingdom August 12, 2019
Koopa Cape 02:17.990 Justin United States December 2, 2019
Maple Treeway 01:47.516 Justin United States August 22, 2019
Grumble Volcano 00:16.385 Niyake Japan September 23, 2019
Dry Dry Ruins 01:47.173 Luke United Kingdom October 4, 2019
Moonview Highway 01:43.152 Luke United Kingdom December 24, 2018
Bowser's Castle 02:09.113 Blaze United States September 8, 2019
Rainbow Road 02:24.864 Ando United States October 19, 2019
GCN Peach Beach 01:00.395 ßrαiχeπ726 United States June 29, 2017
DS Yoshi Falls 00:58.747 Braixen United States May 24, 2019
SNES Ghost Valley 2 00:50.862 Leaf United States March 10, 2019
N64 Mario Raceway 01:41.358 Jascha Canada April 30, 2019
N64 Sherbet Land 01:17.754 Ross C United States August 18, 2019
GBA Shy Guy Beach 01:21.496 Sosis United States January 13, 2019
DS Delfino Square 02:04.296 Luke United Kingdom April 11, 2019
GCN Waluigi Stadium 01:48.614 Connor United States November 17, 2019
DS Desert Hills 01:31.539 David United Kingdom December 9, 2019
GBA Bowser Castle 3 01:57.627 Luke United Kingdom May 4, 2019
N64 DK's Jungle Parkway 00:45.280 ßrαiχeπ726 United States January 13, 2017
GCN Mario Circuit 01:30.612 Luke United Kingdom November 8, 2019
SNES Mario Circuit 3 01:17.889 Luke United Kingdom October 28, 2019
DS Peach Gardens 01:59.217 Brett United States February 21, 2019
GCN DK Mountain 01:58.772 Logan United States January 29, 2019
N64 Bowser's Castle 02:30.980 Luke United Kingdom November 29, 2018

Competition/Tournament-exclusive Arenas

Karts and Bikes

Image Name AKA Weight Unlock


Standard Kart S Light
MKW Booster Seat.png
Booster Seat Baby Booster Light
Mini Beast Concerto Light
MKW Cheep Charger.png
Cheep Charger Light Get Star Rank or more for all 50cc Retro Cups.
Tiny Titan Rally Romper Light Unlock 1 Expert Staff Ghost or win 50 WFC races.
Blue Falcon Light Win Lightning Cup in Mirror Mode.


Standard Bike S Light
Bullet Bike Light
Bit Bike Nanobike Light
Quacker Light Win Star Cup in 150cc.
Magikruiser Light Play 8 different courses in Time Trial mode.
Jet Bubble Bubble Bike Light Win Leaf Cup in Mirror Mode.


Standard Kart M Middle
Classic Dragster Nostalgia 1 Middle
Wild Wing Middle
Super Blooper Turbo Blooper Middle Win Leaf Cup in 50cc.
MKW Day Tripper.png
Daytripper Royal Racer Middle Win Leaf Cup in 150cc.
Sprinter B Dasher Mk 2 Middle Unlock 24 Expert Staff Ghosts or win 3000 WFC races.


Standard Bike M Middle
Mach Bike Middle
Sugarscoot Bon Bon Middle
Zip Zip Rapide Middle Win Lightning Cup in 100cc.
Sneakster Nitrocycle Middle Get Star Rank or more in all 100cc Nitro Cups.
Dolphin Dasher Middle Win Star Cup in Mirror Mode.


Standard Kart L Heavy
Offroader Heavy
MKW Flame Flyer.png
Flame Flyer Heavy
Piranha Prowler Heavy Win Special Cup in 50cc.
Jetsetter Aero Glider Heavy Get Star Rank or more in all 150cc Retro Cups.
Honeycoupe Dragonetti Heavy Win Lightning Cup in 150cc.


Standard Bike L Heavy
MKW Flame Runner.png
Flame Runner Bowser Bike Heavy
Wario Bike Heavy
Shooting Star Twinkle Star Heavy Win Star Cup in 100cc.
Spear Torpedo Heavy Unlock 12 Expert Staff Ghosts.
Phantom Heavy Win Special Cup in Mirror Mode.


Mario Kart Wii includes two new items, the Mega Mushroom and the POW Block, and brings back the Thunder Cloud from the Mario Kart Arcade GP installments (all three of which are absent from Mario Kart 7 and Mario Kart 8). Items can be earned by driving through Item Boxes on the courses, just like in the previous games. Once a player has done so, an item will be selected via the Item Roulette. Players can use items by pressing padleft. In general, players tend to obtain a weak item such as a Banana or a Green Shell when they are in first. However, if players are in a lower place, they obtain a slightly more powerful item such as a Red Shell or Lightning. Usually, the lower the place of the player, the rarer and more powerful the item they get. Stars, Mega Mushrooms, and Bullet Bills are examples of powerful items as they provide speed boosts and invincibility. This is the only game in the Mario Kart series where the drivers do not vocally react to getting inked by a Blooper.

Name Image Ability
Banana Peel Banana - Mario Kart Wii.png This can be placed on the road and cause drivers to slip around upon contact.
Triple Banana Peels Triple Bananas - Mario Kart Wii.png Ditto - the bananas can be dropped one at a time, or all at once.
Green Shell Green Shell Artwork - Mario Kart Wii.png This shell speeds forwards on the ground at a straight line, but can also deflect off walls. Drivers that collide with the shell will tumble over.
Triple Green Shells Triple Green Shells Artwork - Mario Kart Wii.png Ditto - however, initially they will rotate around the driver, acting as a shield from most attacks.
Red Shell Red Shell Artwork - Mario Kart Wii.png This shell locks onto the next opponent ahead of the driver, and chases them to knock them over.
Triple Red Shell Triple Red Shells - Mario Kart Wii.png Ditto - like the triple green shells, they will initially rotate around the driver as a protection.
Mushroom Mushroom - Mario Kart Wii.png Gives a speed boost.
Triple Mushrooms Triple Mushrooms - Mario Kart Wii.jpg Ditto
Fake Item Box Fake Item Box - Mario Kart Wii.png Coloured red and black, this item box is actually an obstacle and will tumble tricked drivers over.
Bob-omb Bob-omb (MKWii).png This can be thrown ahead (or be dropped just behind). The bomb will stay on the track for a few seconds, then explode - anyone caught in the blast radius gets thrown over. 
Blooper Blooper Artwork - Mario Kart Wii.png This pesky creature squirts black ink over all the opponents ahead, obstructing their view.
Mega Mushroom Mega Mushroom Artwork - Mario Kart Wii.png This transforms the driver into a giant momentarily, along with the added benefits of a speed boost and stomping over opponents to flatten them.
Blue Shell Spiny Shell - Mario Kart Wii.png This infamous shell soars over the course to find the unfortunate driver in first place, and explode onto them to send them flying.
POW Block
POW Block - Mario Kart Wii.png

When activated, all the drivers ahead will encounter a POW block - if they don't respond in time, the block will shake their surroundings. This causes them to slip around to a halt and lose items. Whilst unavoidable, you can minimise its impact by shaking the remote immediately. This item will only affect drivers on the ground.

Thundercloud Thunder Cloud Artwork - Mario Kart Wii.png This item will appear over the driver's ahead for a period of time, and grant them speed boosts every few seconds. However, the cloud has to be transferred onto another driver by colliding onto them - when it disappears it will shrink the driver. 
Star Star - Mario Kart Wii.png Makes the driver flash in rainbow and gives them invincible powers - any opponent that collides onto the driver will get knocked over.
Lightning Thunderbolt - Mario Kart Wii.png Shrinks all the drivers ahead. The drivers return to their normal size at a rate corresponding with their position i.e. the driver at first place will take the longest to return back to normal.
Golden Mushroom Golden Mushroom Artwork - Mario Kart Wii.png Serves as an upgraded form of a mushroom, which can be used to provide multiple boosts over and over again for a period of time.
Bullet Bill Bullet Bill Artwork - Mario Kart Wii.png Arguably the most powerful item in Mario Kart, this is given to drivers floundering in the worst positions. When activated the driver is turned into an auto-pilot bullet rocket that boosts across the track at high speed, and will knock away any opponents upon contact. 

Items in bold are newly introduced in this game.

Differences in multiplayer modes

As in the previous games in the Mario Kart series, there are several small changes made to the courses in split-screen mode, most likely to preserve the frame-rate.

  • At the start of a race, Lakitu is next to the player driver, slightly facing the side of the track. In single player mode, he is in front of the player driver, facing the camera. This only counts for races though, in battles Lakitu always starts next to the player.
  • The question marks in the Item Boxes spin around with the box. They are static in single player mode.
  • Frame-rate slows to 30 frames per second if the screen is split 4 ways or is in Two Player Online.
  • The fourth screen in local three player play displays a dynamic camera that rotates between the three player drivers.
  • Computer players do not animate. In Battle Mode, their voices are also absent.
  • There are no tourists on the Sunshine cruise ship in GCN Peach Beach.
  • Boos do not animate in SNES Ghost Valley 2.
  • In GCN Waluigi Stadium, the metal Piranha Plants do not move their jaws, and the moving arrow signs and the Jumbotron are absent as in Mario Kart: Double Dash!!
  • There are no Miis in the stores in Coconut Mall.
  • The crowd in Mario Circuit, Toad's Factory, Daisy Circuit, and DS Delfino Square do not animate.
  • No tourists are on the ship in N64 DK's Jungle Parkway.
  • The Jumbotron at Funky Stadium does not show the human player; instead it shows a picture of Funky Kong's face with the words "Funky Stadium".
  • Star Bits are missing in Rainbow Road.


Trading cards were released to celebrate the release of Mario Kart Wii. Trading card packs additionally included tattoos called FunTats.


Critical reception

Mario Kart Wii has received positive reviews from critics. It has an average score of 82.07% from 74 reviews in GameRankings and an average of 82 based on 73 reviews on Metacritic.[4][5]

Bozon of IGN gave the game an 8.5 out of 10, praising the online play, the presentation, and the gameplay but criticizing the cheap AI in 150cc, the lack of voice chat, reliance on friend codes, and the random items. He finished off with, "Every player is going to have their own love/hate relationship with Mario Kart Wii, but in the end the game does so many things right that it'd be foolish not to give credit where due. Online seriously raises the bar for Nintendo, trumping even Smash in a big, big way. The sense of community you can get even with random racers online and ghost-supported leader boards is impressive, and the fact that you can head on to Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection solo, with a friend via split-screen, or hook up with buddies across the world without worry of lag and never-ending disconnect notices makes Mario Kart Wii a pure joy to play online. It isn't the best Mario Kart in the series, but it's a must-play experience on Wii, and standard-setting offering as far as online, channel support, and connectivity are concerned. Now if you'll excuse us, we've got some online stats to obsess over."[6] Sammy Barker of Nintendo Life praised the game for its polished gameplay and being well-thought and brilliant. Though he criticized the presentation, he wrote, "Poor presentation should not be an issue in this generation of gaming, particularly with the other consoles doing it so well, but, thankfully for us (as Wii owners), this game is a living, breathing example of gameplay over graphics." He gave the game 9/10 stars.[7] Oli Welsh of Eurogamer gave the game a score of 8/10. He praised the presentation of the game, the use of the Wii Wheel, and the smooth gameplay while criticizing the Battle Mode and the single player exclusive Grand Prix mode (though this was revised after being informed by Nintendo that four sequences of races with friends is still possible). He wrote, "Ultimately, the sheer sensory pleasure of playing Mario Kart Wii - from the charming animations, to the bopping tunes, to the sugar-rush boosting, to the exquisite steering - far overcomes the few concerns we have about it. It still has to be docked a mark for the awkward structure and compromised battle modes - but it's still unreservedly recommended to anyone for whom Mario Kart is a gaming cornerstone. And really, that should be everyone."[8]

Ryan Davis of Giant Bomb criticized the game for being safe. He wrote, "Mario Kart Wii is a good game stunted by its audience's apparently insatiable appetite for the exact same thing, over and over again. The addition of online play and motion controls are good, but they're also the most predictable choices possible. Personally, I'm completely tired of getting exactly what I expect." He gave the game a 3 out of 5 stars.[9] Edge gave the game 6/10, criticizing the game's compromising local, splitscreen multiplayer for online play. They ended with "Undercutting local multiplayer to benefit the online movement is a grievous error. Of all the multiplayer franchises, we struggle to think of a title in which four friends sat side by side seemed more natural. Having sacrificed racing integrity in Double Dash to side with social silliness, Nintendo has turned 180 degrees into an awkward halfway house. It’s a residence from where it has attempted to regain time-trial credentials with the loosest racing yet, and sees the company finally find its online feet by betraying one of its great pastimes. Perhaps first place in Mario Kart Wii isn't the least enjoyable location in gaming after all."[10]


Mario Kart Wii won the "Favorite Video Game" award at the Nickelodeon 2010 Kids' Choice Awards, beating out The Legend of Zelda: Spirit Tracks, Wii Fit, and Wii Sports Resort. The game won the Best Online Multiplayer Game from IGN in 2008.[11] In the Guinness World Records 2010 Gamer's Edition, Mario Kart Wii won the "Best-selling racing game" accolade.[12]


In the week of May 4, 2008 in Japan, Mario Kart Wii became the best-selling game for the Wii, having sold over a million copies in Japan, less than a month after its release.[13] In the UK, Mario Kart Wii was the 8th biggest selling video game in British history and the single best-selling Nintendo game in history.[14] In the United States, at the month's release, Mario Kart Wii was the second best-seller at 1.12 million copies, being beaten out by the Xbox 360 version of Grand Theft Auto IV, but outselling the PlayStation 3 version of Grand Theft Auto IV.[15] Mario Kart Wii currently is the second best-selling game on the Wii, beaten out by Wii Sports, and in turn the best-selling Mario game on the system; the game has sold a total of 37.24 million units as of September 30, 2019, making it the second-best-selling racing video game of all time and the second-best-selling Mario Kart game, only being beaten out by Mario Kart 8 Deluxe.



  Main article: Mario Kart Wii/gallery



  • This is the second most popular Wii game, which means that this is the most popular Mario-related video game to be released for the Wii. It is also the only game in the series to be released for the Wii.
  • This is the first Mario Kart game to support 16:9 widescreen.
  • The Pin Sound in the Rhythm Boxing track from Wii Fit is played at the end for this game's Staff Roll B Music Track.
  • The menu music is similar to that of Mario Kart DS.
  • Some of the playable characters' voice clips were later recycled in Mario Kart 7 and Mario Party 9.
  • Mission Mode was supposed to return from Mario Kart DS as the menu is still found in the files. It is thought that it was scrapped quite late in development.
  • The save data description is "Race for first!"
  • For the marketing of Mario Kart Wii in the United States only, Nintendo of America did a series of three commercials starring Cowboy Jed, primarily to promote their slogan for this game: "Get Behind The Wheel!" The slogan focuses on the Wii Wheel, Nintendo's targeted gameplay control, as stated earlier in this article.
  • This is the only game in the Mario Kart series where data cannot be transferred between consoles.
  • This game uses a font which was created by Fontworks Japan, Inc.
  • In the opening cutscene, Peach can be seen racing with her hair untied. She always wears a ponytail in-game.
  • This is the first Mario Kart to use twelve racers instead of eight.


  1. IR Information : Sales Data - Top Selling Software Sales Unites - Wii Software (as of September 30, 2019)
  3. IGN: Update: Mario Kart Wii Text Chat Details
  4. GameRankings score for Mario Kart Wii. Retrieved December 11, 2013.
  5. Metacritic score for Mario Kart Wii. Metacritic. Retrieved December 11, 2013.
  6. Bozon (Apr 20, 2008) Mario Kart Wii Review. IGN. Retrieved December 11, 2013.
  7. Barker, Sammy (April 14, 2008) Review: Mario Kart Wii. Nintendo Life. Retrieved December 11, 2013.
  8. Welsh, Oli. (March 20, 2008) Mario Kart Wii Review. Eurogamer. Retrieved December 11, 2013.
  9. Davis, Ryan (May 7, 2008) Mario Kart Wii review. Giant Bomb. Retrieved December 11, 2013.
  10. Mario Kart Wii review. Edge. Retrieved December 11, 2013.
  11. IGN Wii: Best Online Multiplayer Game. IGN. Retrieved March 7, 2018.
  12. Funk, John (May 21, 2010) Mario's Ten Best Guinness World Records. The Escapist. Retrieved March 7, 2018.
  13. McWhertor, Michael. (March 8, 2008). Ain't No Stopping Mario Kart Wii In Japan. Kotaku. Retrieved March 5, 2018.
  14. Sales Charts British Sales Charts. Kotaku. Retrieved March 5, 2018.
  15. Sinclair, Brendan. (June 5, 2008) NPD: US April game revs spike on GTAIV. GameSpot. Retrieved March 5, 2018.

External links