I just came back from my wee European "tourné" that concluded one month of my TBi ownership during which I travelled some 3200 km.
Impressions of the engine are so far very positive. At the beggining, I was not 100% convinced about the engine choice. I sensed hesitation at start and was not amazed with performance. However, now it loosened up nicely and I must say that the difference is like night and day. Hesitation gone, very nice pull right from the start (I always used BMW 2.8 liter inline 6 as a reference) and very good overall performance, beating even abovementioned BMW.
My trip took me to the land of Autobahns, where I checked AR claims of 235 kmh. Sad to say that I "just" managed to push my bella to 225 kmh and had impression that it will not go anyway faster in forseeable future
Maybe due to imperfect weather conditions and still fresh engine. Otherwise it pulls very nicely to about 210 kmh, where you still feel that there is little bit more if needed.
Dynamically the car is very stable up to 200 kmh but degrades if you go faster (note mine is TI version). At 225kmh starts to be playful, so not nice and confidence inspiring. Good brakes.
Average fuel cosumption as currently indicated by the computer: 12.5 L/100 km, so not so bad. Autonomy of around 600 km depending on where and how driven (I only put 98-100 octane fuel in it, so may differ for 95).
As for the noise of 1750 TBi, it sounds (well doesn't sound most of the time) good to me. Only noticable over 4000 rpm (on low gears). Don't see any problems with that and I bless it whenever I drive my wife's wee tractor (VW 1.9 TDI). Perfect, silent gliding at 120 kmh with just road surface noise. Ideal as a GT car.
Otherwise no problems to write home about (MY09/10), no squeaks, rattling, etc. TI seats very comfortable. Going to check front tyres when washing her to see if I'm in for any surprises after 3200 km.
So for any of you who still hesitate - don't anymore. TBi is really a nice engine if fuel consumption is not an issue.