I really like my VTR as it's pretty nippy for a group seven insurance. As I am only five foot two inches tall the car fits me perfectly, although some of my taller friends and family have commented on the pedals being small and close together (their problem, not mine!). Having done just over fifteen thousand miles the only gripe I have got is that the fitted Michelin Pilot tyres have worn rather quickly on the front wheels. This may be due to the compound being rather soft but the plus side is that they grip really well.
Other dislikes centre around the interior. Apart from the white dials it really is pretty ordinary. The plastic gear lever top, although nice and shiny at the very pinnacle, had started to show some signs of wear and was replaced with a nice aluminium Conrero from Larkspeed of Rotherham at a cost of £40.
The only other modification I have made is to replace the paper air filter for a cotton K&N one (£33). I plan to replace the whole air intake system with an induction kit.
Other mods I plan are to get rid of the ghastly front grill which looks very cheap in black plastic for a nice mesh one, sixteen inch alloys, new suspension bushes, a lowering kit and Splitfire spark plugs and HT leads. I will only make these changes when the warranty has run out as I don't want to invalidate it.
My performance figures (post cotton filter) read as 0-60 in 9.3 seconds and a top speed of 120+ (the speedo only goes up to 120!). I must also say that as I have clocked up the miles the engine seems to have loosened up noticeably.
As for ride and handling, the standard suspension mated with the Michelin tyres really is superb. The ride is firm but comfortable (the seats score highly here), and gives you the confidence to go into corners and bends at some ridiculous speeds. The steering is sharp and precise and only under steers if you really are pushing on a bit. Driving around town in traffic the ride can be bit jiggly, but that's my girlfriends opinion and not mine.
What can I say about the engine? Only eight valves, but feeling like sixteen, and that's a pretty neat trick. At low revs it drives like any other small car, but push it up into that high rev section and it is simply sublime with a great sound to match.
There may be some Saxo drivers out there who don't agree with what I've written, but I have had no problems and a whole heap of fun.