Sometimes it’s hard not to take things personally. I was driving BMW’s latest i3 plug-in electric vehicle from Johannesburg to Pretoria, obeying route instructions from the pre-programmed satnav, when it directed me off course and up to the gates of an Irene old-age estate. My (also mature) co-driver and I laughed it off as a technical glitch. But that afternoon, while driving the new i8 Roadster convertible, we were pulled over by a traffic policeman who suspected the car might have been stolen. Then he looked inside: "Oh, it’s old people. That’s all right, you can go." Twice in one day. Someone’s trying to tell me something. The reason for the constable’s suspicion was that we were in the dusty outskirts of the East Rand — not where you’d typically find a R2.3m sports car. One positive: I can state categorically that the i8’s soft-top closes as quickly as the manufacturer claims and that acceleration from zero is very fast. It was my fault we were there. My navigation skills weren...

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