I'm in Australia. Bought this thing (the split seat F4i version, equivalent to the FS in the UK) at 30,000km early in 2010; been riding this thing for 15,0000km since, with just about zero problems.
For a sports bike, it is very comfortable posture-wise - leaning forward enough for sports corners, but still upright enough when cruising; it's probably the last of the 600 supersports that was comfortable (I'm 175cm, 80kg). Tall riders (6 foot or more) may find this bike small, but if you're medium like me, it's a great fit. Most of my riding is 200-300km outside metro areas, on weekends.
Reliability wise - it's been almost bullet proof. I installed a set of Oxford Hot Hands and cigarette lighter power point (under the seat) - mechanically it was typical Honda - easy to install a relay to control the items I installed above. The fairings are quite easy to remove and reinstall (a service manual off the Internet helps a great deal), giving easy access to most things.
Servicing of the bike is quite sraightforward - the fuel tank does have to come off to access the spark plugs, but once there it's fine. I changed my cam chain tensioner (a well known issue on CBR600's in general, but does not affect every bike) once, but the old one was still working fine. The engine "rattle" may just be more a characteristic noise than a problem.
Touring wise - it's not as comfortable as a genuine sports tourer, but for a sports bike, it's quite comfortable - I've done 300-500kms a day and not felt sore on my bum or my back.
Fuel consumption is around 5-6L per 100km, depending on how you ride it - city use is generally good (5L/100km), on the highway at 110km/h thanks to poor aerodynamics for any bike, it's closer to 5.5L/100km. Still gives a comfortable range of 250km before the reserve light comes on, which is quite a good range if you're in a country like Australia where servos are not necessarily every 10kms ...
Engine performance is again very solid - not the torquiest of engines under 3000rpm, but ample enough for general acceleration. Engine spins from 2000rpm smoothly, gets wild at 6000rpm, before going dangerously ballistic at 10,000rpm (redline is about 14,500rpm). If you complain about not having enough power after riding this bike, you need to question your riding, not the bike ...
All in all, it's an incredibly fine all rounder, with a good array of features(the dashboard has ample info), such as fully adjustable suspension on the front and back.
I fitted an excellent (read affordable!) Renntec sports rack and top box; soft panniers also wrap around the pillion seat quite snugly (I use generic ebay ones; the branded ones I think will work very well too).
My last ride was just last week, to the Snowy Ride in the Snowy Mountains - a total 1500kms and the bike did not miss a beat (weather was generally fine, with the odd shower). I felt very comfortable all the way through; the bike took in the long cruising roads very comfortably, but handled the tight roads in the alps just as brilliantly.
The biggest test the bike had was a 12-hour ride in unrelenting and blinding storms on the way to the Philip Island Moto GP in 2010 - the bike again did not miss a beat, and the Oxford Hot Hands are STILL working till this day!
All in all, if you're after a do-it-all bike that will last almost forever - there's a couple of American riders on the CBR Forum who've been touring on the F4/FS's to beyond 250,000 MILES with no major engine rebuilds ... this is one bike you will not regret. Yes it was "bland" when new, but people forget it was a Honda, which means it's "ideal" now. Find a well serviced one, and go for it.