Carlos Tevez mimicked his car being impounded by police but it was not the Argentine's bizarre celebration and a heavy defeat that left Aston Villa's players looking bewildered.
Already ahead through David Silva's first goal of the campaign, Villa were still looking stubborn before linesman Adrian Holmes held his flag out after the Spaniard's corner had flashed across the area eight minutes into the second period.
Yaya Toure had appealed for another corner but there was an air of bafflement when referee Jon Moss pointed to the spot because Holmes thought Andreas Weimann had handled, when it appeared that it was the head of City's Matija Nastasic's that changed the direction of the ball.
Sergio Aguero put the penalty into the corner and Villa crumbled.
"What the linesman saw there I do not know," Villa manager Paul Lambert said. "You have to be 100 per cent sure to give that. He saw something 50,000 other people didn't see.
"There is no point in talking to the officials. We are always hauled up as managers but that is a woeful decision. He said to our players he was 100 per cent sure it was his hand. He might not watch it again, he will probably have a night out somewhere. It was wrong. That was a guess."
Tevez scored a third from the spot before celebrating by sitting down and pretending to turn a steering wheel in reference to his Porsche being taken away on a tow truck last week because he does not have a valid UK licence.
Aguero thumped in a fourth and Tevez tapped in at the far post to make it five and seem like one of the more comfortable afternoons in an unbeaten home run in the league that now stands at 36 matches.
It was a contest like so many of those City home games, with the visitors' lone striker standing alongside City's two centre-halves and watching what equates to an arm wrestle on the edge of the visitors' area.
After the criticism he has faced for his recent performances, Joe Hart was still forced into a couple of decent saves, from his team-mate Vincent Kompany and Christian Benteke, before City made the breakthrough just before the interval.
With 15 assists on the way to winning the league title last season, Silva will always be measured on his creativity rather than his goals but even that has been limited to just two in the current campaign before Villa's visit.
Having returned from almost a month out with a hamstring problem in the 2-1 win over Tottenham, this was much more like it from the little Spaniard and he thumped in from close range after Villa failed to clear a Samir Nasri corner.
Villa were finally broken when Holmes spotted a handball that no one else saw and Aguero made no mistake from the spot. Weimann opened his arms wide in frustration towards the fourth official, Mark Halsey, as he was replaced just after the hour to sum up the visitors' mood.
When Barry Bannan did handle at the feet of Silva 10 minutes later, it was Tevez's turn to finish with a penalty before making light of his car issues.
Aguero burst clear and beat Brad Guzman at the near post thanks to a deflection and Tevez added a fifth when he steered the ball in from a Nasri cross.
City had not managed more than three goals previously this season and manager Roberto Mancini, whose side face Real Madrid in the Champions League on Wednesday, said: "I hope from the last two games we changed something. In our mind we can have a period like last year and [put behind us] the problems that we had in the first two months."
Manchester City (4-4-2): Hart; Maicon, Kompany, Nastasic, Clichy (Kolarov 73); Silva (Sinclair 76), Y Toure, Barry, Nasri; Aguero (Dzeko 68), Tevez.
Subs: Pantilimon (g), Zabaleta, Lescott, Garcia, Dzeko.
Aston Villa (4-4-1-1): Guzan, Lowton, Vlaar, Clark, Stevens, Westwood; Bannan, Weimann (Holman 62), Agbonlahor, Ireland (Albrighton 62); Benteke (Bowery 83). Subs: Given (g), El Ahmadi, Delph, Baker. Booked: Bannan.
Referee: J Moss (West Yorkshire).