The standard advice for burning audio CDs for use in old-school CD players the one in my car, for instance is to burn at the lowest speed available. (See, for instance, this old Tom’s Hardware thread.)
The last Nero update I installed doesn’t allow for speeds under 8X, so I’d been using that, with mixed results. While I was reading up on something else, an idea occurred to me: what if my burner, which is supposedly capable of doing DVDs already and has had one firmware update, just doesn’t like being slowed to 8X?
So on the next disc, I said the hell with it, and cranked it up to 32X. No problems. Encouraged, I did one at 48X. Halfway through playing Track 2, the player errored out and did not recover; it had to be shown a new disc and given a promise that it wouldn’t have to look at such things anymore.