I was searching for two bikes around $300-400 price range (each) a month ago.
your bike list was very similar to my wishlist.
I ended up with 05 GT avalanche 3.0 (it was so sweet deal so I could not pass it. paid $189 at performance). so far, I like the bike except pedal ( pedal seems to weak compare to 04 hardrock pro). anyway, my wife does not abuse the bike so I think it's okay with pedal though. I could not wait for IBEX at that time because they will ship alpine 450 around jan. 20th.
I could not resist unusual warm weather in GA so I thought about getting another GT but I bought used 04 hardrock pro for $300.
Actually the bike was new. owner told me that they've never used the bike. I could not believe it but when I saw the bike it was really brand new.
have you ever thought about used bike? , there is a bike like new condition. you might be able to find better than forge components.
do some search on craigslist.
right before, I decided to buy hardrock pro. someone try to sell new Iron horse outlaw for $250.
Good luck with your search.
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