My Son has a Savage Stevens rifle and just bought a new Tikka T3 Laminate in .338WM
I load for both and have developed some varry accurate loads for both rifles. The Tikka T3 was a shooter right out of the box with just about any ammo we put through it.
One word of warning on the Tikka T3. It has a very very short magazine. So if you intend to shoot long bullets out of that 7mm Rem mag. Then think again. You will have to seat them right down into the cartridge to fit in the mag and this way you will be a long way off the lands. Otherwise it is a single load rifle.
With the Tikka T3 .338WM I had to seat the standard 225gn Hornady soft point bullet deeper than the canlure to fit into the mag. This meant that I had to back off the powder charge and get reduced velocity in comparison to my Sako .338WM with a larger magazine. I was then way off the lands but it still shoots nice round 1 inch groups.
If you want to shoot long bullets, go for the Savage.
The magazine length is VERY good info....I would shy away from that rifle.
I use my rifle for hunting. I'm pretty sure the animal could care less how beautiful your stock is, or how smooth the action was. All brands these days are pretty darn good. Some offering more options than most. But all that mattered to me was accuracy, and savage offers it at the best price. I recently purchased a 30-06 savage axis,dropped a 6x5 bull elk at 400 yards where it stood. I'm sure I could have done it with a tikka but my savage only cost me 280.00 bucks. All those other extras is personal preference. But I'm very happy with my savage.
Go out and handle both, choose the one that feels best in your hands. Either will more than likely be accurate, but with factory rifles (even models with good reputations) there's always that "luck of the draw" to deal with. The long action Tikkas are limited by magazine length, but regardless, the 3 rifles I've had experience with were all 1/4" to 1/2" guns @ 100 yards with their favorite loads.
I own a dozen or more Savages for shooting prairie dogs. The CZ 223 is my go to coyote gun, the Ruger 7mag has been my go to big game rifle. Bought a new Tikka T3 ultra light in 30-06 last winter that is lite and smooth as silk with a good trigger. The rings that came with the Tikka didn't stand up to the recoil and it is a little fussy about the load. There is plenty of room in the mag to go longer but it seams to like them at book length.
To me Savages are crude actions that are easy to work on but I hate the accutrigger...
__________________ "Make everything as simple as possible, but not simpler." -Albert Einstein (1879-1955)
I have both a Tikka t3 and a Savage 110. I would pick the Tikka every time. Action is the smoothest of any production rifle, crazy accurate out of the box. there are more and more aftermarket accessories for these great rifles. Factory trigger is fantastic. Crisp, light with no creep. Boyds, McMillian,Manners all make stocks for them. Action is very strong and tight. putting a new tube on is no more difficult than any other. Savages shoots 1.5 moa , Tikka .5 moa. apple to apples, Tikka wins in my opinion
I can kill'm close, now to kill'm far
I ˛wn (4) tikkas and (4) savages. Everyone of my tikkas is a sub moa gun. (3) of my savages are sub moa guns. Would I spend $1400 plus on a savage... No. I did and would again on a tikka... got a t3 tactical and it is an amazing gun. Now... I really like the savages that I have... But wouldn't even dream of trading one of my tikkas for a savage. Not a chance. I'm sure some would say that they wouldn't trade their savage for a tikka.... But I own both... And the tikkas are just in a different category quality-wise to me... And when I buy or own a gun... what matters is how I feel about the rifle/pistol.
Savages are and can be excellent shooting guns... But I think the tikka IS an excellent gun.... Neither compares to some of the top tier guns... But for base models... The tikka t3 lite is a lot for the money.
Get your hands on both... Side by side... And see which feels right to you. You might end up with the savage... I have... And they fit their nitch in my gun closet, but I think it'll be hard to say that the savage feels like a higher quality gun than the tikka.
Just my opinion.
The definition of "insanity": only being able or allowed to own a single firearm.