Thanks for the replies guys. Yes, you really do have to be careful with the clutch and throttle for a fast getaway. In fact, up to a point, the more throttle you give it the worse it is, as it bogs down more than if you just do a standard crawl away from a start. Its like if you need to pull away fast for a right turn onto a main road and you try to get a fast start. You rev the engine, drop the clutch, the revs die away and you think "oh sh..." and then the damn car only starts to really pick up when you are on the other side of the raod, safely or otherwise! You are right in that there is a definite step at 3000 rpm and above, and at high speed its really fine. By the way it has the 15" multi hole Lusso alloys. The reason I wonder if there is a fix is that my friends year 2000 car has the 16" alloys and the same engine, but is much better. Were any changes made to the engine or its state of tune in 2000 ? I wonder if a chip would help but I am a bit wary after spending over £200 on a Lambda sensor without getting any real improvement. I used to have a 75 Twin Spark and that engine was much more torquey, with a hell of a lot more mpg. Some much for progress - I would swap the smoothness of the 16V for the eagerness of the old 8V anytime, but I am not about to do an engine swap !