In its price range, the Si stands out. Stock, it's on par with the GTI, Cobalt, supercharged tC, and RSX Type-S. Yet the GTI and supercharged tC are limited as tuner cars and are more expensive for the setup and don't handle as well. The Si even compensates for low toque with its high rev short throw setup. It's interiors and Honda's build quality beat out the Cobalt and RSX (how it beats the "higher class" version of the same company is a mystery to me), and the GTI's exterior is a matter of personal taste. Whether its stock or tuned, the Si packs a punch behind the wheel and outdoes its competitors. It even has bonuses like a 300w audio system, moon roof, and a sleek racy design.
VTEC. LSD/VSA. Quick to rev. Power for price. Smooth yet sporty 6-speed setup. Slick exterior and luxurious yet functional interior. Sound system.
More torque. Slightly different fifth->sixth ratio. Turbocharger or supercharger option for more power. Leather option. Less markup (produce more). Stronger external paneling (feels flimsy). A more pulled back trunk for more back seat space and better flow.