I haven't read through this whole thread, so maybe someone already suggested this... - You'll get WAY more bike for your money if you buy used. If i were looking for a mountain bike, i'd only look in the 1-4 year old range. But for a road bike you're good looking for bikes older than that. I ride a 10 year old cyclocross bike and have no intentions of upgrading any time soon. Go to pinkbike.com, click on the buy/sell tab, you'll find lots of bikes. Look in your local area, but many sellers are willing to ship.