Seven’s titanIum frame-building skills are superb, but what sets the Axiom apart is not the attention to detail but the ride.
The Axiom SL is no comfort biased, all-day mile-eater, this is a race bike through and through. The set-up is truly aggressive; this bike wants to go fast.
The front end responds instantly to input both through the pedals and in changes of direction. It’s more at home in fast criterium-style racing than long climbs over big cols, although the frame does a superb job of dulling vibrations and chatter from poor road surfaces.
The Di2 drivetrain is faultless and Seven has done a superb job of routing the wiring internally through the chassis. Mavic’s Cosmic Carbone clinchers may seem a strange choice on a titanium bike, but their weight penalty over a standard wheel is easily offset by the aero advantage that comes into play once you’re up to speed, and you can hold a high pace for much longer.
It’s easy to heap praise on what is a superb bike, but in a world obsessed with carbon bikes, the Axiom proves it’s possible to make a full-fat, ﬂat-out fast race machine from titanium, a material all too quickly dismissed as the choice for comfort and distance bikes designed to go longer but slower.
As with all Sevens, the build is fully custom, and UK distributor Sigma will design any build to suit your requirements.
What makes the Axiom special?
Seven’s own titanium dropout is machined from solid billet, it’s larger (and thicker) than you would expect on a typical high-end race bike, but this is what keeps the back end anchored, all adding to the Axiom’s solid feel.
Shimano’s Di2 ﬂagship electronic shifting is the future and the Axiom has fully custom internal routing for the Di2’s cabling. It’s brilliantly executed, entering the frame on the down-tube and exiting at both the BB and chainstay.
Tube welds are clean and uniform, and the braze-ons are perfect. The dropouts and head-tube have both also been machined to perfection, showing the high level of craftsmanship that’s gone into this beautiful frame.
The Seven’s carbon fork provides the perfect balance of vibration damping and sharp handling. It’s custom ﬁnished to match the paintwork (Seven offers a range of 20 stock colours and a vast array of schemes).
This article was originally published in Cycling Plus magazine.