This car is awesome if you don't mind taking your time to get to 60 - by my clock it's about 20-25 seconds, and that's by shifting at 5500. 40 miles per gallon IS very nice, especially when these prices are going $2.15+ and you only have to fill up every three weeks or so (it's only a ten gallon tank!)
My friends laugh at how small it is, and that fact that there are only three spark plugs, but when their SUV's and big trucks are sucking down fuel like a redneck with a Big Gulp, well.. I just laugh and continue on. It isn't too small for two people to take a trip for less than about three hours, but don't expect for it to haul your luggage for a two-week stay somewhere.
There's a nice view from the driver's seat. You have plenty of glass in front of you and with the top down - blind spots are all, but there. The nicest thing is being able to drop the top (takes about 20 seconds if you're slow) and cruise in the sun.
If you get serious on the throttle, it gets pretty mean-sounding above about 5500 up to 6500 red-line. You actually do have enough power up in that high of a range to spin the tires, but it doesn't last long and I wouldn't trust the stock clutch for too much of that. The shifter seems to be from a truck, a little too tall for a car, and it isn't quite the short-shifter you may expect.
The gears are set up perfectly, first is right and runs out quick for traffic, second is good for getting up to speed, third seems to engage perfect about 3000 (anything lower and it shows the lack of torque), fourth is pretty low and fifth is your overdrive gear (good for about 50mpg on the highway). The clutch is the easiest I've used ever, the friction point is right where you expect it to be and doesn't run out quick or take too long to draw up.
The suspension isn't an auto-cross set-up or anything, in fact this car handles like a wet sponge. It's a great highway cruiser or around-town car because the worst mileage I've had is 35. Ouch.
This car has lasted me great for a first car, being a 16 year-old, but I'm ready for a new, faster car ('vert RX-7!). Awesome new car for a new driver, but only so long as it's a 5-speed, and it needs to be taken care of.