One of the very few things that I’ve missed while enjoying using the Sony A35 is a solid build quality to the kit lens. Like similar lenses from Nikon, Canon and Olympus, the Sony 18-55mm f3.5-5.6 is optically good for the price, but plasticky in construction and feel. It doesn’t feel as if it would take much abuse, certainly not compared to an all-metal lens.
I don’t think it’s necessary for a lens to be all metal construction to feel much more robust in the hand – I’m very happy with the feel and finish of the Nikon 18-200mm f3.5-5.6, which isn’t entirely metal. But this is the standard of build I’d be hoping for from the new 16-50mm f2.8 that’s expected to accompany the A77. There’s something wrong about a solid and robust feel to the body and a light, plastic feel to the lens.