Define 'nice'... Here's why? I've driven several 1ZZ-FEs and its kinda weedy to me. It has good response from low to mid, but runs out of breath out top.
the 1zz is no powerhouse... get that.... but with this said ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^ i'll rest the argument.
if it did pull all the way through low-mid-high there would be no need for the 2zz would there?
I'm gonna jump in on the 1ZZFE VS 2ZZGE thing right here.
The 2 engines are designed in completely different manners, with different characteristics, as is evident in the incompatibility of most of their parts (no head swaps or anything).
$upra, your first post had the example of driver's impressions of the Celica GT VS GTS. As i said before the 1ZZFE was created for the commuter, who needs usable torque. In the city, its impractical to rev upwards of 6000rpm unless you are doing something illegal or trying to piss off anyone in earshot.
The 1ZZ redlines at around 6400rpm, peak torque comes at around 4500rpm.
The 2ZZ redlines at around 8200rpm, but peak torque only comes in after Lift engagement at 6400rpm
In the larger picture, both are low on torque, there is no "high torque" ZZ engine. The 1ZZ, because it does not have a second cam to engage, has a smoother/more linear powerband that is more rewarding at civilized rpm levels. The 2ZZ is built for peak horsepower, like a bike engine (lets not forget it was co-designed by Yamaha) has a big cam that NEEDS high rpm to make power. And because performance drivers are in the minority, then the statement that "a lot of people" prefered the Celica GT, is based on the statistics that the larger segment of the market wants driveability rather than a race engine.
Your statement that "if the 1zz pulled strongly in the lo-mid&high range there would be no need for the 2ZZ" is still unfounded because ultimately it still wouldnt have the same horsepower potential as the 2ZZGE.