This is the blender that started this whole search due to a piece of plastic panel coming off the top. It's still in production, but it's been out of stock for over a year — otherwise I probably would've just bought another one.
I used this blender for a couple years and I think it's a great middle-of-the-road example. MSRP is a little too expensive imo, but with just enough power not to feel bad about it.
The trigger handle is comfy to use, but it's kinda silly that they say you can control the speed consistently that way — that's just not true.