The S7 is modern in the best sense. Sleek lines flowing from the pen of Stefano Righini into a windswept windshield and sportbridge are a testament to that. Even if you’ve been living under a rock and have never heard of Azimut before, one look at the S7 dockside and you know this boat was born to perform.
What makes the S7 special is not the lines and Italian style you notice at a glance; it’s what lies just beneath the surface: carbon fiber. The strong, lightweight material is used generously above the waterline from the transom garage door and the superstructure up to the radar arch. Carbon fiber is such an integral part of this model’s DNA that the designers chose to incorporate the material liberally in design elements like artwork. Inlaid in counters and tabletops and clearly visible in the superstructure, it’s everywhere. And it’s not just for decoration, either. This much carbon fiber reduces the boat’s weight (it’s 89,000 pounds fully loaded, while, for comparison, the Ferretti 70 weighs in at 109,000 pounds) and lowers the center of gravity, resulting in the performance mentioned earlier.
Carbon fiber also lends this 70-footer enhanced interior volume, which is also aided by the triple IPS 1050 propulsion package, tucked far aft in the hull. That space allows for a generous-sized salon and a four-cabin (plus crew’s quarters) layout below. The layout, courtesy of designer Francesca Guida, is conventional-ish in nature in that it has a VIP forward and two double cabins (one with bunks, another with side-by-side berths) aft of the VIP.
The amidships master is where things get interesting. The space uses the full 17-foot 5-inch beam—par for the course with Azimut—but when you walk in, you see that the berth is cantilevered. Across from the berth is a partition that houses a curved television. Behind that partition is a sink. And behind that is a door to the head.
The master is spacious, and that spaciousness can be found not just in the living spaces but again in spots you don’t notice right away, like the engine room. With three 800-horsepower engines lying side-by-side-by-side I began the process of limbering up before stepping down into what I was sure was going to be a sardine can of an engine room. I was pleasantly surprised to see that there was an entirely civilized amount of space to move around in, and access to all the important service points was good.
Let’s talk performance. The morning of my test felt like something out of a movie. It was a warm September day; the streets of Cannes, France, were still and quiet, save for a fleet of street sweepers. The Bay of Cannes was mirror-flat. The S7 leapt onto plane and was in full sprint right out of the blocks. She was quick (35.1 knots at WOT) and quiet (69 decibels); what you would expect from a boat with lines as sporty as the S7’s. But what really stood out for me was its responsiveness. Carving turns in this boat was, for lack of a more dramatic word, thrilling. It felt as if the wheel and joystick became an extension of my arm as I turned the boat in tighter and tighter circles. The Azimut S7 left a real impression. —Daniel Harding Jr.
Marine Max, 888-429-6812; marinemax.com/azimut
DISPL: 89,000 lbs.
FUEL: 1,003 gal.
WATER: 264 gal.
TEST POWER: 3/800-hp Volvo Penta D13 IPS1050
TOP SPEED: 35 knots