Help me pick an AVR32

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I'm looking at designing an Arduino like proto board using an AVR32 micro controller. This would be a platform suitable for HS or College students to use for embedded controller projects. I've already designed a similar board using an ATmega1284, and have an ATxmega128A3U design in the works. Each of these boards will have 8-16k of sram, 128k of flash, and at least 24 available I/O lines (though 2 are usually devoted for a serial / USB connection for use with a bootstrap firmware loader). The atmega uses the Arduino platform, the xmega might, or I may end up customizing Eclipse. I'm open to ideas on the AVR32 platform.

I've never used an AVR32 so this project would be a first for me. I am familiar with the 8 bit AVRs. Can someone suggest a suitable AVR32 processor? It should be in a QFP package to allow for the option of hand soldering. It should have a minimum of 128K flash and 8-16k sram. It should have a minimum of 24 available I/O lines. I'd prefer a part with USB support, but as with the xmega I don't know if LUFA is ready to support at least a virtual serial connection for a bootstrap loader and gp comm support. I also don't know how easy (or possible) it would be to develop with LUFA or Atmel's framework package without using studio 6. I want to use a cross platform development environment that works on windows, Linux, and MAC. This would seem to imply something based on Arduino, Wiring, Eclipse, or (ugh) Emacs.

Any ideas? Thanks.

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AT32UC3B0256 has a rather nice mid/small size and price.
And yes LUFA has drivers for the AVR32 now. Must say i do not know of there release status but that info is out there for thos who look :)
You can easyly use make files with the Toolchain and ASF for cross platform.

And since you start from scratch comming from AVR8 I suggest you get hold of a Dev kit. They are much more complicated that AVR8 but also that much nicer 8)

Hope it helps

"It can NOT be solved in firmware later"