This car in my opinion is one of the greatest Hondas ever built. The Si is really in a class by itself, as Honda has continued to shun turbos in favor of high RPM fun. You've no doubt read about the severe lack of low end torque, but I'm here to tell you that this complaint is way overblown. The car moves smartly around town, and is perfectly calibrated for American highways. The interior is a combo of jet-fighter/Prius, but works fine for me. If you intend to purchase an 8th generation Si, know that the car underwent a mid-cycle refresh in '09, which addressed some minor issues affecting earlier models. There were also some exterior cosmetic improvements in those later years.
I have owned the car since April 2011 and it has 4,600 miles on it so far as of Feb. 2012. Great car and fun to drive! I have a couple complaints. Shift knob, seats adn road noise. The shift knob has an aluminum top and when the car has been sitting in the summer heat all day that shift knob becomes as hot as an iron. I ordered a leather knob yesterday to get ready for this summer. The OEM one looks nice, but it's not practical. The sport seats initally are a bit tight, breaking them in now. Way too much road noise. Engine noise is nice, but noise from tires is excessive.
My initial thoughts were posted here a little over a year ago, and I have since put about 6K miles on the odometer. I thought I'd provide a more objective review, now that the giddiness has worn off somewhat. I'm still in love with this vehicle! It provides tremendous bang for the buck, has been trouble-free, and looks like a poor man's exotic from certain angles. I will break down and admit that the lack of low-end power has become apparent, and sometimes I feel like a show-off when I'm revving the engine alongside my fellow motorists. They think I'm trying to race them, while I'm just trying to keep up. Oh, but what a sound! One day soon these high-RPM engines will be no more.
As per usual, getting the right launch means finding the optimal spin-to-bog tipping point. Very noticeable VTEC cam phasing. Shifter is brilliant, quick and well defined. Too bad about the 2nd-gear ratio hitting the rev limiter just shy of 60 mph and necessitating a shift to 3rd. Love the sound of this engine!
Ultra-consistent distances and fade-free stops, though we did smell brakes after both decel and accel runs. Adequate pedal feel and easy to modulate in everyday driving, too.
Stability control merely closes throttle (no brake application), but it still grips rather well. With stability off, the Si responds only slightly to throttle input/output. Holds a line very well with mild understeer. Overall, very good balance. Steering feels spring-loaded, offers some feel but not much. In the slalom, stability is pretty crude and abrupt with brake application. Shutting it off releases the chassis' full potential, which is astonishly good. Lightning reflexes from steering and weight transfer is immediate. This car does exactly what it is told to do. Very little roll and limited-slip differential makes the exit easy-peasy at wide-open throttle.