yeah, sub 25 pound hardtails can be found. a while back a friend of mine find this on the web for half the price. look around and you could get it in the high 700s. http://www.motobecane.com/MBUSAflp05.html
note: dont blame me if it breaks over the first bump though
I've got the base model. Actually had an "05 Hardrock Sport last year. Biggest weight reduction can be had in the tires (very heavy - 800-900grams each), Fork (it's an anchor @ about 6lbs or so), and crankset. I bought a Manitou Skareb on ebay for about $150 and dropped 3lbs. right off the bat. Lighter tires can save you at least another pound.
It is so easy to build a light hardtail for much less money. I built a 24 lbs singlespeed for less than $500. So, if you want to spend $$$ on brand name (including Motobecane and Ibex brands) then go ahead, pay and straight to the trail. Or, if you want to do it yourself, you will have a great time and chance to learn so much about bikes. Good books are $15-20 like those from Alwood and Zinn; required tools should be less than $100. My impression is that for $1000 you can build a nice XT/Avid hardtail.
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