To my mind, design excellence is about performance and craft melded into a unique offer of absolute authenticity. So when BMW asked me to test-drive a gleaming new 4 Series Convertible – a true object of desire – I leapt at the opportunity. At a glance, the lines are slick, the solid, compact volume inspires confidence, the tone of arctic white just right. Seated, you’re confident, assured. (You know you look good!) It glides out from the curb, effortlessly, you feel the power under the hood as you pick up speed – aware that on city streets you will never feel it hit maximum throttle, you begin dreaming of long drives on deserted roads. It’s an incredible piece of engineering in every aspect, from engine to axle, to suspension and the best bucket seats around. And of course, it’s also very beautiful, truly sophisticated. And then, you pop the top – it drops at lightening speed, and stops with a self-satisfied ‘click’. Low-lying, high-flying, This little beauty is the epitome of quality design and creative engineering.