||12-01-13 11:09 AM
Limited experience, not ownership. I shopped these because I want something like this; my coworker has the 7-speed steel fork version and I think he cheaped out a bit. The sweet spot for me was 7.4 trim level, I didn't look higher than that. I'd actually have liked 8-speed just as well as 9, but wanted the carbon fork. Above that the wheels get lower spoke count and the gearing goes from hybrid triple to compact double. I need a lower range.
Clicking back and forth just now between the pictures on the 7.7 and 7.6 pages seemed odd, so I looked at the geometry. Holy cow, the carbon frame is three inches shorter wheelbase. The chain stays are much shorter and head tube is 2 degrees steeper. The sizing switches from inches (MTB) to centimeters (road). I think they just took a road bike and put flat bars on it.
Since I'm not feeling well this morning and just sitting on the couch, I looked into it further. It's a Madone 3 frame. The frame geometry pages match exactly. They share many components too.