My car does have a personality - pretty cooperative and agreeable, with a bit of an edge when I push it hard.
I think a manual transmission totally transforms the characteristics of some cars...that was definitely true with my Honda Accord EX coupe, which I had before my current vehicle, a 2001 Toyota RAV4. I'd driven the automatic versions of both, and found them quite uninteresting and sluggish. Not so with a 5-speed.
The RAV may not jump away from a stop, but it certainly accelerates quickly and has the extra power when I need it. It doesn't mind cold days as much as the Accord, but still cranks a little slower. It also doesn't mind sudden manoevres and responds well to control inputs. I think the fact that I keep it clean and well-maintained affects the RAV's performance and "agreeable" characteristics, if you will.