Brendan McAleer

Automotive Writer and Photographer

Vancouver, BC

Brendan McAleer

Likes cars, loves stories.



The Hellcat and the Devil's Brigade: A transnational journey in a Challenger Widebody

Blasting through the borderlands in a supercharged testament to Canadian-American teamwork. In the spring of 1942, 700 Canadian volunteers marched south from here to Montana to join their American counterparts in forming a secret combined commando unit. At first, the allies fought it out in chaos, bruised knuckles and broken heads.
Autoweek Link to Story

The fever dream of a Ferrari F40

In the summer of 1987, I turned nine and a man named Enzo Ferrari presented the F40 to a small group of journalists in Italy. Built to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the company that bore his name, Enzo’s final project was as uncompromising as the man himself. That’s because two years earlier, the Porsche 959, more powerful and faster than anything Ferrari then made, had debuted at the Frankfurt Motor Show.

The Ultimate Jensen Interceptor

Rain, a typical September feature of the British Midlands, soaks the tarmac of a decommissioned RAF airfield. Spitfires and Hurricanes once flew here; today the place is quiet, expectant, waiting on an interceptor of a different kind. A matte-white coupe sits on the runway, looking like a Mustang II but somehow wrong.
Autoweek Link to Story

This Is the Only Good Porsche Cayenne

The first-gen Cayenne is arguably the worst Porsche ever. Not that there isn't plenty of competition for this booby prize: The 924 is slow, the 914 is slow and has a gear linkage like shaking hands with a corpse, and the original Panamera resembles a whale schwanz. Yet for many Porsche fans, the original Cayenne marked the point at which Stuttgart pivoted from being a company where performance and heritage were utmost, to another mass manufacturer churning out crossovers and profits.
Road & Track Link to Story

How a Vancouver auto shop refurbished the classic Alfa Romeo that won the Concours d’Elegance

Two thousand kilometres from the champagne and confetti canons, the workshop has something of a stunned hush about it, until the sound of hammer-on-metal breaks the silence, a TIG welder hums and cracks, an angle grinder emits a brief shower of sparks. The crew at RX Autoworks in North Vancouver, B.C., may be still absorbing the enormity of having their restored 1937 Alfa Romeo judged as best-in-show at the prestigious Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance last month, but the lull won’t last for long.

How Northern Ireland’s motorcycling hero Joey Dunlop became the King of the Roads

The tiny Isle of Man, floating between Ireland and Britain in the Irish sea, is a unique place. As a self-governing Crown dependency, it boasts the oldest continuously serving parliament in the world; with Manx, it has its own language set apart from Irish and Scots Gaelic. Its people are British citizens and the head of state is the Queen.

The end of the Dodge Viper

In the ever-shrinking distance, spires of glass mark the march of gentrification, a rolling tide of money to drown industrial areas in condos, townhouses, and apartments. Yet in the east end of the city, it still stinks of fish processing plants and welded sheet metal, of work done in steel-toed boots.

Made in Canada: A look at the long history of Canadian cars and the people who build them

Nearly 4,000 people work at the Fiat Chrysler Automobiles factory in Brampton, Ont., making Dodge Challengers and Chargers. A few hundred kilometres closer to Detroit, 6,000 workers build the Pacifica and Grand Caravan minivans. In Oshawa and Ingersoll, Ont., factories churn out the Equinox and the Impala.

Volkswagen’s electric car sets Pikes Peak record

On a cool morning in June with clouds moving in from the east, the mountain crowned its new king. Two-time Le Mans champion Romain Dumas took the green flag in his specially prepared Volkswagen I.D. R prototype racer, and a scorching seven minutes 57 seconds later, crossed the finish line and entered the record books as the fastest car to ever ascend Pikes Peak.

Review: The 2018 Dodge Challenger Hellcat is a sledgehammer on wheels

“I heard you coming from up on the ridge,” said a grinning farmer, stepping down from a mud-spattered Ram 3500 at the fuel pump. “I figured something nasty was on the way.”. Meet the Challenger Hellcat, which doesn’t speak softly, but does carry a rather large stick. Where other retro-themed domestic nameplates have sharpened their cornering skills to become world-beaters at the track, the Challenger remains an unapologetically blunt instrument.

Is this electric Porsche 912 heresy or prophecy?

On the eve of Luftgekühlt, a celebration of all things air-cooled, a silver teardrop courses down the mountain. The sight of it is like a watching period historical footage on mute: the speed is there, but not the sound. Past and present blend together in a way that might enrage purists, but you shouldn’t turn up your nose just because this 1966 Porsche 912 runs on electrons instead of gas.

British Car Enthusiasm Will Be Saved by Screaming Japanese Engine Swaps

To the casual observer, Japanese and British auto manufacturing is as different as chalk and cheese, sushi and spotted dick, driving your car to a location and arriving or having to push it there because several important bits have gone sproing. On one hand, there exists the same sort of joyless reliability you get from your toaster.
Road & Track Link to Story


Brendan McAleer

Brendan McAleer first drove a stick-shift at the age of eight, and it's been pretty much downhill from there.

He has written stories on everything from a mint-condition Hyundai Pony to a Rolls-Royce Phantom Drophead. His work appears in the Globe & Mail, Time's TheDrive,, Road & Track, and elsewhere.

His inbox is always open to hearing about the machines that move us, physically and emotionally. He currently resides in North Vancouver, British Columbia.