Who is Marc Priestley?

Born in October 1976, in Bromley, England, Marc ‘Elvis’ Priestley is a presenter and TV personality, who joined Mike Brewer as the new co-host of Discovery Channel’s “Wheeler Dealers” for its 17th season in 2021, replacing Ant Anstead. Other shows co-hosted by Marc include “Wheeler Dealers: Dream Car”, which was recently renewed by Discovery for another season.

Despite being relatively unknown in the reality TV industry, Marc boasts over a decade of experience working as a mechanic for the McLaren Formula 1 (F1) team. After leaving McLaren behind in 2009, Marc became a journalist and broadcaster, who has done commentary work for both the BBC and Sky Sports; he also writes for various magazines and websites.

Unsurprisingly, there’s a lot of pressure on Marc to help carry the show following the departure of Ant Anstead, who replaced mechanic and former co-host Edd China. With Edd being such a beloved figure on “Wheeler Dealers” for over a decade, the show’s producers have been trying to find the right fit of someone who can complement Mike while bringing their own expertise to the series.

Another of Marc’s hidden talents is his penmanship, as the TV personality has written the book entitled “The Mechanic: The Secret World of the F1 Pitlane”, discussing the lives of racecar drivers and crews, as well as commenting on industry rivalries, and explaining how everyone contributes to the success of the team.

Having met racing legends during his time in F1, Marc is well-versed on the topic. Some of the famous faces he’s worked closely with include Fernando Alonso, Jenson Button, Lewis Hamilton, Mika Hakkinen and Kimi Raikkonen, to name a few. The affable co-host also participated in 2014’s Formula E racing series coverage with ITV; Formula E, although far less popular, has the advantage of being environmentally friendly, due to the electric cars used in races.

Moving on to Marc’s personal life, he was nicknamed ‘Elvis’ in high school for two reasons: because his surname sounded similar to ‘Presley’, and to differentiate from all the other pupils who shared his first name. During his F1 days, he was also known as ‘F1 Elvis’.

The fan favorite has been quietly married to Clare – an interior designer fanatic and expert in upholstery and antiques – since 2013. They share four children; two girls who he shouted-out on Instagram for International Woman’s Day, and two boys. Clare and Marc work hard to keep their children away from the spotlight, and it’s working out so far, as their names and birthdays remain a mystery to the general public.

Mike Brewer

The presenter and car trader Mike Brewer was born in August 1964, and made a name for himself on “Wheeler Dealers”, although his first TV appearance came in the late 1990s. Despite the occasional professional hiccup, his automotive knowhow and natural demeanor in front of cameras made him an instant favorite with viewers, who first got to know Mike as a presenter of “Deals on Wheels” in 1997; in the same year, the Londoner presented ITV1’s “Pulling Power”, and was seen in episodes of “Driven”.

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Mike’s love for cars runs in the family. His father, Roger, owned a Ford Popular, was nicknamed “Mr. Popstar” and was enamored with vehicle customizing; Mike learned practically everything he knows from him, and bought his first Mini 850cc as soon as he could. Not much else is known about his early years: he’s believed to be an only child, and his mother, Doreen, was a housewife.

In 2003, Mike’s career trajectory changed for the better when Discovery Channel offered him a co-hosting gig on “Wheeler Dealers”. Alongside Edd China, the show grew and flourished, reaching unexpected heights as the dynamic duo worked their on-screen magic for over a decade. Things changed somewhat with Edd’s unexpected departure in 2017, but Mike has worked diligently to maintain the show’s charm, despite lower viewing figures than before.

“World’s Greatest Cars,” “Auto Trader”, and “Wheeler Dealers: Dream Car” are just a few other shows which Mike has presented. He also works annually with Sky Sports to present British Rally Championship coverage, and has been seen in episodes of “Remote Madness” and “Revved Up”.

In 2010, he travelled to Afghanistan for the filming of Discovery Channel’s “Frontline Battle Machines” and was in close contact with frontline troops. At one moment, enemies injured the pilot of Mike’s helicopter with well-aimed missiles and forced a landing, but thankfully everyone involved in filming came out unscathed.

Mike is also the image of Mike Brewer Motors, a car dealership that operates out of Sheffield and Luton in England since 2012. The dealership has an almost 100% satisfaction rating, and is praised for its stellar customer service; John Tustin, the co-owner, is responsible for the brand’s growth and management and runs Mike Brewer Preparation Centers and Mike Brewer Accident Repair, while Mike himself is tasked with bringing visibility to the dealership.

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With that said, Mike has plenty of his own accolades. In October 2000, he set a 24-hour Endurance Land Speed Record while driving a Volvo S60 T5, and four years later he would win “Best In Vision Personality” at the Royal Television Society Midland Centre awards. He has also launched a unique annual awards ceremony for UK-based used-car dealers.

When his filming schedule and other responsibilities allow it, Mike spends plenty of time with his spouse Michelle and their daughter. The apparently happy trio reside in Warwickshire, and are currently renovating an 1865 Gothic manor which they purchased in April 2022. The restoration process is being documented on social media – from replacing whole rooms to rebuilding the chimney stack and roofing, there’s plenty of work to be done, and it seems that Mike and Michelle are loving every minute of it. Small businesses are helping out wherever they can, in exchange for an online shoutout; the project is ongoing and has no end date.

Michelle, who is considered the driving force behind “Wheeler Dealers”, is her husband’s greatest fan and a pilar of support for the car trader. The exuberant blonde takes great pride in promoting her husband’s work, and prefers to stay out of the spotlight, but we do know that she maintains good friendships with Mike’s co-workers, while also  being a fan of baking and gastronomy.

The Warwickshire native is perceived as a humble and down-to-earth person, which is why the vitriol her husband faced after Edd left “Wheeler Dealers” came as a shock to both of them. In mid-2020, she posted a photo of some of the online abuse Mike faces, or faced, on an almost daily basis. The photo was captioned: “This is the kind of daily abuse that someone in the public eye has to endure every day… I believe this is totally unacceptable, and social media companies now need to make everyone accountable.”

Michelle has yet to publicly comment on the rumored rivalry between Mike and Edd, but she and her husband publicly supported “Workshop Diaries,” Edd’s YouTube series, when it launched in March 2021.

Edd China

Edd China was born in London in the early 1970s, and studied at King Edward’s School and London South Bank University, from where he graduated with an engineering product design degree. The celebrity’s love for cars and mechanics became evident at a young age; his first invention of note, a driving sofa dubbed the Casual Lofa, was built to raise funds for a trip to Belize, and unexpectedly, helped him become the famous face he is today.

As the Casual Lofa was noticed by those in the TV industry, Edd was given his first small-screen job as a special effects technician when he was in his early 20s. In 1998, he was a guest on “Top Gear” Live, and drove the Casual Lofa at the Live Arena in Silverstone. The Casual Lofa was also seen on “The Big Breakfast”, “Scrapheap Challenge”, and “The Most Outrageous Jeremy Clarkson Video In The World… Ever!”.

Edd’s ability to think outside the box, and to invent interesting objects on a small budget garnered him a lot of attention over the years. In a “Top Gear” segment, he was tasked with building a James Bond-worthy car on a budget, and managed to purchase and modify a Rover 800 for the low price of £300. In 2003, he was given his greatest job yet, as co-host on “Wheeler Dealers” after his work caught the Discovery Channel’s attention.

Although Mike and Edd appeared to be a dream team, both fans and casual viewers of “Wheeler Dealers” were left heartbroken when the quirky mechanic announced his departure on YouTube in early 2017. The decision to leave came after butting heads with the show’s production team, who wanted to slash Edd’s educational workshop segments in which he taught viewers the easiest – and cheapest – ways to repair cars. Of course, this would mean less screentime for Edd and, possibly, a lower salary.

A few days after the announcement, Edd took to YouTube once again, claiming that Mike had gotten in touch to complain about the death threats and abuse he and his family had suffered after being blamed for Edd leaving the show. Perhaps understandably, most viewers tuned in for Edd’s workshop segments and felt that Mike should’ve been more vocal in his support, and perhaps threatened to walk away as well. Some even hoped that the car trader would leave Discovery altogether, and launch his own show with Edd.

As it happens, Edd seems to have little interest in returning to TV. Despite his popularity and the pull his name brings, his appearances on the small screen have been few and far between. In 2005, he was a celebrity guest on “Ready Steady Cook” and raised funds for Children in Need, and in 2007, he was seen in an episode of “The Culture Show” in which he interviewed performers at the Edinburgh Festival.

There have been rumors of Edd being quietly blackballed from returning to TV after leaving Discovery; whatever the case, he’s hard at work as an inventor and content creator. In 2012, he and Tom Onslow-Cole teamed up to convert a milk float into a drag racer, as part of a sponsored challenge, and landed the first-ever Guinness World Records entry for the world’s fastest milk float. Mike also holds records for the largest motorized shopping trolley, and fastest bed, toilet, and shed.

Edd has carved out his own lane on YouTube, such as his independent series “Edd China’s Garage Revival” – in which he teaches viewers mechanics on a budget – and the well-known “Workshop Diaries” in which he documents his latest projects.

“Wheeler Dealers”

As mentioned, Edd and Mike’s on-screen banter and chemistry helped make “Wheeler Dealers” what it was during its golden years. The show premiered in October 2003, and has undergone a series of changes since Edd left; for example, his first replacement, Ant Anstead, decided to step down when the show returned to its roots, and resumed filming in the UK after filming in the US for half a decade.

The first “Wheeler Dealers” spin-off, “Wheeler Dealers: Trading Up”, was launched in 2013. Mike had to travel the world with just $3,000 in his pocket, stopping in various countries to buy and sell vehicles and reach his final goal: buying a luxury sports car worth at least $30,000. In the show’s first season, Mike travelled to India and bought a humble 2004 Suzuki on which he then made a $400 profit. He also bought a 2000 Hindustan Ambassador Classic, and a 2004 Tata Indigo Marina; the first bump in the road came when one of the vehicles was stuck out at sea while being delivered to the UK.

After leaving India, Mike travelled to the UK and filmed In Newark, Hertfordshire, and London. In Sweden, the car trader took a risky gamble on a 1967 Chevrolet on which he made a $500 loss. Three cars later, he travelled to Japan, and suffered a $3,000 setback after purchasing a 1976 Toyota Coupe that came with a faulty alternator.

The last episodes of season one were filmed in Mexico City, San Francisco and Dubai. Amazingly, Mike was left penniless after spending all his cash on a car that got stuck out at sea, and so was sold a rundown 2005 Toyota Prado on trust, which some viewers think was staged for dramatic purposes. Ultimately, he achieved his goal of buying a Porsche convertible for almost $30,000.

During season two, filming took place in Poland, Brazil, Australia, Italy and the UK. “Trading Up” was sadly cancelled due to low viewing figures, but “Wheeler Dealers: Dream Car” has been far more popular, as Mike and Marc help disillusioned car owners swap their autos for much more attractive models.

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