So... after much contemplation going back and forth on every bike brand that I could see: Fuji, Raleigh, Giant, Trek, Schwinn, Cannondale, and others...
The Trek 7.1 is what I've almost settled on as my commuter bike. A quick few questions.
My commute is 14.5 miles each way with a paved mountain (thats right, not a hill) to cross going to and coming back.
The road is a 4 lane road highway and I will be on the shoulder of it (has a good wide shoulder)
The fellow I talked to said the trek 7.1 would be good because its a combination of steel (more shock absorbent) and aluminum. Since it'll only be used in the road and on the should (where some loose gravel and debris are) he said I would not need suspension on it. And of course theres the don't spend more then you have to and get accessories with the remaining money.
* Does it hold Racks and Fenders, do you recommend (link/url) to any?
* I noticed the 7.2 came with puncture resistant tires. Can I put these on or get puncture resistant tires? Is there any reason I couldn't do it?