It's the best all round car I have ever owned, and more individual than the alternatives. The V8 was only made in small numbers, but despite this was completely re-engineered relative to the other ZTs with rear wheel drive and a 4.6L v8 engine normally found under the bonnet of a Ford Mustang.
The handling is sublime, lots of grip with progressive oversteer if you are really provoke it, which is satisfyingly easy to catch. You don't have to take my word for it, a certain Mr.J.Clarkson writes "It’s not a razor-sharp handler. Think of it as a destroyer rather than a speedboat, but in extremis, trust me on this, it’s very good."
Brakes (from AP Racing at the rear and BMW at the front) work very well and even blatting up and down Welsh mountains didn't provoke any fade.
The huge engine really is the heart of the car and dominates the experience with a throaty roar from start up and a satisfying growl when pressing on.
You feel the downside of this at the pumps, but it's not as bad as I at first feared, low 20s MPG better than my Fiat 2.0 turbo and similar to a friends RX-8.
260bhp sounds a lot, but this is a heavy car and it doesn't feel super quick. The specs say otherwise, but it's never felt as fast as my Fiat. There is lots of torque on tap and it is deceptive, there's no 'kick in the back' like a turbo or VTEC car, but a gradual build up of power from 2.5k to up to the 6k red line. The gearing is relatively long and it's easy to go faster than you intend!
The low-speed ride is a little harsh over speed bumps and the like, but otherwise this is a very comfy car with a fantastic HK hi-fi, TV, Sat-nav, heated seats, auto-dimming mirror, parking sensors and all manner of other toys.
Perhaps the biggest advantage is the price, since MGR went under it has become a performance car bargain, and with a Ford engine and the other major mechanical oddments from BMW, parts shouldn't be a problem.
It's a car with soul, and perfect if you favour unconventional choices.