In times of economic hardship we tend to retreat from what makes us happy– to a space where we can focus on our own survival rather than on the frivolity of life.
As a petrolhead, I fight the doldrums as hard as I can by taking to the road whenever I get the opportunity. Why should I give up on fun just because things are falling apart?
Lucky for me then, that the South African motor industry seems to feel the same way about not letting our circumstances get the better of us. In less than two months, two major motoring events have enticed the public to the Kyalami International Racetrack and Convention Centre. First the SA Festival of Motoring returned with the South African Motoring Experience, drawing out tens of thousands to come and experience their favourite car brands in a day of spring fun. Then it was the turn of the M Festival, BMW’s showcase of their M performance subbrand, and its launchpad for the ballistic M4 Competition Sport. No fewer than 20,000 petrolheads flocked to Kyalami, setting a world record for M Festivals worldwide. The event was as much an affirmation of M’s popularity in South Africa as it was a collective thumbing of the nose to our everyday hardships.
On a smaller scale, and thousands of kilometres away, the world’s foremost luxury car brand set its own milestone that I was privileged to have been able to attend.
Rolls-Royce doesn’t launch a new series of its Phantom flagship saloon every day, but when they do, they make absolutely sure that the event lives up to the nature of the car itself. From the breathtaking vistas over the Lake Lucerne where Rolls chose to introduce the Phantom VIII to the world, to the bespoke experiences arranged for the brand’s guests, the introduction of the world’s most luxurious car was an absolutely brilliant experience.
There is much to celebrate in this edition of Driven, and even more for you to enjoy. Wherever you are, and whatever your circumstances, you deserve to kick back and take some time out with your favourite motoring read.