The Verona adapts to the way you drive so if you're the 2nd owner, the car most likely has adapted to the previous owner. I bought mine new not knowing this and was being nice to the car during the break in period. Because I was driving it like a grandma, it picked that up and there I was with no guts no glory. This past summer I had to take it in for a power window problem and asked if the computer can be reset back to where it would start the learning process over. Yes it can be done and since the warranty is transferrable and if you're under the 36,000 mile warranty you should be able to get this done at your nearest dealer. Grandma got kicked to the curb!!!
There are a couple of computer upgrades to get the transmission back in line and they do help but it is still a little quirky. However, you can drive the car like a stick shift by pushing in the "hold" button on the console. It allows to be a bit more in tune with the car and you can get a better response out of the engine. Everynow and then when I want to feel like a kid again, I'll drive it that way. Just don't forget to start out in 1st again when you're at a stop or you'll lug that engine because let's face it you're trying to go from a dead stop in 4th gear. It's definitely not cool.
A lot of the road noise left when I put a beefier tire on the 16" rims. I went with a Goodyear Assurance Triple-Tred mostly for the look of the tread alone. The gripping of the tire and less road noise was a most pleasant surprise.
I've had mine for about 18 months now. My only complaint is the gas mileage, the highest was probably 23 and that was on the highway. It averages 20-21 no matter how I drive it so I drive it like fast. I've had 2 oil changes which are normally scheduled at every 7500 miles since it uses synthetic oil. Plus it does take almost 8 quarts. So you're looking at about $50 to $80 per oil change depending on where you go. But you only have to go twice a year.
I was able to find a Daewoo Magnus grill on e-bay and swapped out the big S on the front grill with something that looks like a Lincoln grill. Since the Magnus hasn't been distributed to the States, my car is the only one in town like it.
There is a website where you can get either Daewoo grill for around $140 bucks. One looks like the Lincoln the other looks similar to a BMW.
Have fun driving your car. It does grow on you.