based on my experience of 00 vti and 05 vti, i would go for 05 vti anyday.
1) the gen has much better interior (which is where you spend most of time), more leg room, comfortable seats, retractable side mirrors, seat belt alarm, less noisy cabin etc.
2) 7th face lift (eagle eye) in my opinion is much better looking from out site (some honorable members might not agree with me)
3) 6th gen would be more aggressive in drive but poor in breaking.
4) 7th gen would have ABS which too me is a must have feature nowadays.
5) 6th gen would eat more fuel.
If your friend really wants to upgrade from 90s interior, breaks to new millennium he should look form some decently used vti orieal UG PT. it will cost him more initially but trust me he wont regret it
I had both cars at same time and i sold 00 oriel coz i never enjoyed its seat comfort, breaks and interior overall. In acceleration yes its much more responsive than 05 i still have