Brendan McAleer

Automotive Writer and Photographer

Vancouver, BC

Brendan McAleer

Likes cars, loves stories.



The first Ford Taurus SHO is the one history will remember

The Taurus is rightly credited as the car that saved Ford in the mid-1980s, but it has fallen on hard times these days. A massive sales success from its launch in 1985, the Taurus was futuristic enough to be the hero car in Robocop without much more than a black paint job. Today, though, large sedans are on the outs, drowning in the rising tide of crossover sales.

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.

A Lotus Exige Is the Antidote to Distracted Driving

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The ultimate Camaro: Dan and RJ Gottlieb’s Big Red

At 50, the Camaro has fought its way into our hearts to become as much an American icon as its chief rival, the Ford Mustang. Camaros blitzed the dragstrip, hammered through the corners in Trans-Am racing, and were even reborn in 1/64th scale as the very first Hot Wheels ever made. Over the years, many hero Camaros have risen to the top, from the dark blue 1968 Z/28 lightweight fielded by Penske racing in the late 1960s to the yellow-and-black movie magic of Transformers.

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.
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The cars in the high castle​: Behind the scenes with a picture car co-ordinator

The search for old vehicles for TV period productions can be particularly challenging. British Columbia's film industry is expected to spend a record $2.6-billion in the province this year. The demand for technicians and artists is at an all-time high; if a studio is going to be competitive, it's going to need top-notch set designers, makeup artists, riggers, camera crew and special-effects specialists.

A half-century of the Century: Toyota’s Rolls-Royce Turns 50

Japan doesn’t have a king of the road, it has an emperor. More than 17 feet long, typically jet black in color, with wheel covers bearing the phoenix crest often seen atop Buddhist temples, and a general appearance so conservative as to border on anachronism, the Toyota Century is the master of all it surveys.

The British supercar dream of the ’90s: Jaguar XJ220 vs McLaren F1

The Internet. The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air. The 1990s was a time of great change, from digitization to globalism. During these years a new breed of supercars arrived on the scene, defining a new era of performance and engineering. In the ’80s, the Porsche 959 and the Ferrari F40 fired the first salvos on this emerging battleground.

Does the Toyota Supra Deserve to Be Revered?

Put fifteen grand into it and make a monster. Overnight parts from Japan, if you have to. Ask 'em the retail, then blow their doors off. You know the drill: in the pantheon of import speed gods, there's the Toyota Supra, and there's everybody else. It's Zeus with sequential twin-turbos.
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Driving the Alpina B10 BiTurbo, The World's Fastest Four-Door in 1991

To the average bystander, it's just a BMW 5-series. E34-chassis, four round headlights, twin kidney grilles, and a silhouette well balanced between greenhouse and sheetmetal. It's a classic from the era when Bimmers had an air of elegance to them. But this is no BMW. It's a weapon. At the top of a mountain, a collector-plated Honda VF 750 Interceptor curls in to get a closer look at a forest-green sedan.
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This MGB GT Is the Forgotten Hero of Sports Car Racing's Golden Age

You may be forgiven for thinking the Battle of Britain was won by the Spitfire alone. That silhouette of elliptical wings banking to dive on a Messerschmitt or Focke-Wulfe is memorialized time and again on film and canvas, a machine made legend by its deeds. In reality, the wood-and-canvas Hawker Hurricane inflicted just as much damage on the invading Luftwaffe.
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The Car That Started the JDM Tuning Scene Turns 50

It was quick, curvaceous, expensive, and exotic. Never mind that: The 2000GT wasn't half as important as a homely little shoebox that showed up in the same year.
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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.