I like my 2.2 JTS Spider. It's actually a "beach cruiser" more than anything else, so the less-than-sparkling performance is OK with me. Actually, if you're driving on the public roads and intend to keep your license, regularly thrashing a low powered car can be more fun (and less risky to your driving license) than thrashing a high powered car only occasionally.
If I want a bigger performance thrill, I get on my Ducati Motorcycle. By the way, my standard 2.2 is a very smooth tractable engine with no flat spots, hesitation, or any other problems (yet).
I got caught up in the excitement of dressing up a new (to me) car, just like most owners do. So I went for new floor mats, HID headlights, new brakes and rotors, lower/stiffer springs, slightly louder exhaust system, and what is commonly called a "strut brace".
Strut braces are great for MacPherson strut suspensions because they minimize movement of the upper suspension mounting points which are the same as the upper shock/spring mounts. I used to race several different cars with MacPherson suspensions and strut braces were considered mandatory.
However, the Spider doesn't have this kind of suspension so a "strut brace" isn't really a strut brace at all. It simply ties the left and right upper shock mounting points together, but (unlike a MacPherson suspension) there aren't supposed to be any side loads transferred through these mounts; only vertical loads. The upper suspension component on a Spider consists of an A arm, not a strut. The A arm mounting points are located quite far from the upper shock mounts where the so called "strut brace" attaches.
So, contrary to what some people report, you won't notice any real change in handling. But it does look cool when you open the bonnet. Mine is polished aluminum and looks pretty, so that's nice. Plus it only costs about 100€.
Unlike some who claim the Spider has horrible scuttle shake, I can report that mine is pretty well behaved and doesn't exhibit any objectionable lack of body stiffness, considering that it has no structure above the door line. This is true with or without the "strut brace". It's better than many spiders/roadsters/cabriolets I've driven even when driven briskly on the fantastic secondary roads we have here in Italy.
Overall, I'd say the Spider is one of the very best looking cars on the road, it has adequate handling and performance for a "beach cruiser", and is an absolute joy to drive with the top down. If you don't expect it to be a "performance car", you'll love it.