Good review but bear in mind that the usage you describe wouldn't smoke the motor on the household machines (at present, the 5200) either, plus they have a much longer warranty. Still, I've always been tempted by the Vita-Prep. Maybe if I ever trade up my 5000, although the way it's going (almost 7 years), it doesn't look likely for a long time. Vita-Mix really knows how to build machines.
I finally had a chance to see the new lid at a local store and to tell you the truth, I prefer the pop-off. I realize it needs to be seated properly (you can hear the snap when it's in place) but it seems the "ears" on the new one might break off at some point. I like keeping things simple. :)