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Brendan McAleer

Automotive Writer and Photographer

Vancouver, BC

Brendan McAleer

Likes cars, loves stories.

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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.
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American Samurai: The legend of Peter Brock’s unfulfilled racing masterpiece

Somewhere, tucked away beneath a dustcover in a remote garage in El Segundo, California, is likely one of history’s greatest forgotten racing cars. Designed by the man who created the Daytona Cobra and the Corvette Stingray Racer, the Samurai is a nexus of American can-do and Japanese engineering, one that ensured an unlikely legacy of speed.
Autoweek Link to Story
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Clash of Clans: 2017 Type R vs 2018 370Z vs 2018 STI

In the mael-strom of battle in feudal Japan, foot soldiers would bear the mark of the clan, while an elite samurai might carry his own insignia. So it is, centuries later, that three ronin arrived at a lonely back road branded with symbols of legend: Z, STI, and Type R. It’s the last that called for this showdown.
Road & Track Link to Story
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Inside the de facto home for Canadian rally - Squamish, B.C.

In the gathering dusk, Patrick (Rocket) Richard removes his close-fitting dark sunglasses, and palms a handful of pills. “I’ve got to take my daily bread,” he jokes. It takes a few moments for one of Canada’s greatest rally drivers to swallow the bitter mass down. All around us, dust stirred up by Richard’s latest creation settles back over the empty log-sorting yard.
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​Dreams and Madness: How the 2000GT and LFA Give Toyota Its Soul

"Initially, I thought of the 2000GT as a mythical car, but over the years my view has changed. Everybody has a dream car, and companies can have dream cars too. The 2000GT was Toyota's dream." A swelling wave of red sits beneath cherry blossoms in an empty parking lot, its sleek, aluminum-skinned body curved like a master calligrapher's brush-stroke.
Road & Track Link to Story
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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
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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.
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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.
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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.
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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.
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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
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4 sweet civilian-spec military vehicles not named Jeep

Those looking for a rugged vehicle with military roots need look no further than the venerable Jeep. With nearly 80 years of faithful service, the Jeep is the shovel of the off-road world, simple, durable, dependable, common. However, a Jeep is a pretty obvious choice; what if you want something with a little more élan, a little more character?

About

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, Autos.ca, 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.