Hello everyone! Long-time lurker, first-time writer. I'm here because I haven't seen a thread like this yet (although one might exist...please let me know).
I'm buying my first hybrid bike, and I'm very excited. I'm trying really hard to spend less than $500, but it's looking more and more likely I'm going to end up in the $600 range. I ride mostly in the city but want to be able to take it on smoothish trails if I need to. Complicating factor here: I'm 6'5" tall with long legs and a relatively short torso (but skinny, so I don't need to worry too much about weight in terms of number of spokes or anything like that).
I tried out 25" Trek 7.2 and 7.3 FXs today ($549 and $685 at the dealer near my house), and a 23" Fuji Absolute 3.0 (a 2011, so they were selling it for $459). I liked all three bikes OK, although I noticed a pretty big difference in maneuverability/sensitivity between the 7.2 and 7.3, and the Fuji was a bit too small. Had to put the seat way up, which made me feel a bit hunched over (handlebars go up too, so that is a potential solution). In general, I liked the Treks better than the Fuji...I liked the slightly wider wheels especially. The Fuji got a bit jittery on rougher ground.
Advice time...what companies make larger sizes, and what 23" bikes will feel like they are a little bigger? The Trek is the only hybrid I've seen that makes a 25" (which I would prefer) but I'm sure there are more out there. I've been looking at the Diamondback Insight 2 23" as well, but I haven't gotten out to the dealer to ride it yet.
Thanks in advance for the help!