I got my beastie back from the shop ... still waiting parts. Each time I have to do without, I rent or borrow a car .. this time it was a Mazda .. 1.5L something, fairly nice... all electric, cleaner than I normally keep my car, but I have a better stereo :)
I found the mazda felt "tighter" to drive, a bit heavy, but agile on Waiheke's roads. Better hill-climbing. I got used ot it's handling... then when I got back to the delSol I rediscovered why I like it so much. Compared with the mazda I had an extra few horses under the hood and the car felt light and loose on the road (what I normally think of as "normal" performance these days). Once more an exciting drive.
Sometimes I wish for more of a workhorse... but really I wouldn't want a regular car any more.