maybe its just me but i think the red interceptor is one of the pimpest looking ships in the game. As for what I fly, my mains an Ace pilot and once I got my hands on the Jedi Interceptor, i wont fly anything else.
Load up heavy on shields, dump the armor, dump the boosters, yea they are nice for getting around but the ship is already fast as hell and you wont really need them in the long run. You can take missiles, but i would just get anti-missiles and very large guns. Theres a couple other tweaks you can do but its been months since ive flown (moved and didnt have comp) and ive gotten rusty on what a ship can be equipped with.