I have to say, this is the most comfortable bike I've ever ridden. I've operated/owned a Royal Enfield Bullet 500, GSX-G 1100, CM400E, Sportster Custom 1200, Honda Shadow 700, Bandit 1200, Nighthawk 250. Out of all of those, this bike seems to be the most comfortable.
Bear in mind that my rating scores are based upon the type of bike that it is, not bikes in general (with the exception of comfort). For handling and braking it definitely gets a 10 because the bike is so light, it stops on a dime and can be flicked around without much effort.
Roll-on performance is based upon entry level bikes. It gets a 7, as it's not too bad but could be better.
Running costs should be less for a bike of this type. Low maintenance right? One plug, one cylinder, one carburetor. But remember, you have a chain and sprockets that will have to be dealt with, valves that need setting (the manual recommends setting the valves at 1000 miles... kind of ridiculous if you ask me), and the fact that you cannot replace a simple spark plug without removing the fuel tank. Tires are tube tires to keep costs down obviously. Fuel economy is about 50mpg. My Shadow 700 gets 60mpg.
While the bike does have its charm and is fun to ride at times, I don't appreciate the fact that 2 things have needed repair since I purchased it. The rear brake has a spring that attaches to a switch to activate the brake light. Upon an inspection one day, I saw that this was broken. Dealer fixed it in a flash under warranty.
Soon, the front brake pads started to squeal, bad. The longer you rode it, the worse it got. Starting off in the morning, there was no rubbing noise, but soon it would start, and would get worse. A visual inspection revealed almost no padding left, while the rotor seemed uncompromised.
I took the bike to the dealer and was informed that brake pads are not covered under warranty as they are a normal wear item. Working in the automotive industry, I fully understand this. I pointed out however, that 1,000 miles of soft riding wearing down the pads does not constitute normal wear. The service department offered that if I purchased new pads from their parts department, they would put them in for free. I agreed, and the problem is solved.
For a new rider (I bought this for my wife), the riding position, handling, and ease of use make this one of, if not the best starter bikes around. I think there might be some quality control issues with some of them, but overall I'm happy with the purchase.