New Mantra is just as versatile as the '07 Mantra in all conditions. I like wide, I no longer own anything narrower than 90mm underfoot. The '08 Mantra was extremely responsive underfoot for being wider. It is a very subtle change from '07 and if I were trying to build a quiver I would get an '08 Gotama with the '07 Mantra.
I would still use my Mantra that I have currently for those more firm days that I still want something that is going to edge, but at the same time it is going to plow through the soft snow on the side of the trail with ease. It is not really much stiffer, just where it is needed. The anchors on the '06 Mantra had issues and with the change to '07 they made them deeper and the same for '08.
I think they are trying to get it back to where the Explosiv was in '05 before the Mantra was introduced. The new '08 Gotama would stil lbe my go to ski for powder days when I am not playing on my Line Elizabeths which I have actually been using more as my all mountain ski more than anything. 16m turn radius on the Elizabeth with a 110mm's underfoot.
So in all the Mantra still has the great edge that it had in '07 it is just slightly wider and slightly stiffer torsionally. You can not go wrong with either ski. If you mount a Z12 Ti Binding on the '07 Mantra it only weighs 11.5lbs for a pair in a 170cm length.
I may have some '08 Mantra's soon but I think it will be a 177cm not 184cm.