The Canon GL2 or Sony HVR-HD1000 might be what you are looking for... The Sony is a shoulder mount, so will help with steadiness tracking fast movement without a tripod.
"Impressive, professional looking at low cost" does not use flash memory. The only one larger than a little handheld that uses flash memory would be the Panasonic HDX200 - it is a bit our of your price range.
I know this is daft, but has any one got any suggestions for a fairly decent looking camcorder.
I know I can't get a VX2000E or anything just yet, but I wondered if there were any camcorders which look a bit more impressive than one of the really mini fellas you get. Any suggestions as to models I could look at?
I think that I'd quite like something with flash memory, or that I can easily use for putting videos on YouTube and our website. The videos might feature cyclists, so they'd be moving at a reasonable pace.
I know it's silly to worry about what it looks like but it might be necessary to convince my boss I'll be able to do something!