I loved the controls of the vehicles, although some vehicles seemed to not handle well. I raced a few races before I realized all out gas didnt work, you have to brake and let off the gas on some corners and jam on the gas coming out of them. I loved this game and would highly recommend it to people that like a mixture of asphalt and dirt racing.
Some people probably play enough racing games that this game isn't that hard, but I'm not one of those people. Within 10 minutes, I almost felt like paying for the game, just so that I could smash the disc into little bits. Seemed crazy how hard the game is, even on "easy."
I like car games, I love driving in GTA4, for example, which seemed plenty difficult to me, and I've done well with less sim-like racers. They're not at all like this game, though. Controlling these cars at even relatively slow speeds can be really frustrating, until you learn the basics, some of which aren't at all obvious. I mean, we all know that in any decent driving game, you need to slow down around corners. You know you'll lose control if you aren't careful with the breaks. Things like that.
What I had to muster the patience to learn though, is that I needed to work a lot harder to control the car, at all times. Even slight turns could send me spinning, until I learned to ease up on the gas a whole lot, even when I wasn't taking sharp turns. I had to learn to pump the gas pedal to regain my grip on the roads, rather than just expecting to be able to steer out of a slide. Things like that.
I still play on easy, but at least now I'm able to play well enough to see how well done the game is. I'd still prefer a driving game where I can just tear through, exhilarated the scenery speeding past, rather than needing to incessantly focus so hard on every minor but demandingly precise adjustment to steering and speed.. but that's just me, and maybe this isn't exactly my kind of game.
Still, now that I'm getting somewhere with it, instead of just wrecking my car on the first track at even the easiest settings, I can appreciate how polished and fun this game is.
I just wish they had some sort of tutorial mode, for those of us who are new to the genre.