May 9, 2007

Bajaj Discover 135 DTSi: Riding Impression

Bajaj Discover 135 DTSiThe normal way to make a designer gown even more classy and upmarket is to stud it with Swarovski crystals. Or, if you are really, really rich, use real diamonds and charge the earth. However, 125cc motorcycles are the aforementioned gowns and so studding them with anything apart from stickers – in itself a dubious strategy – is usually not a great idea. So, in a market full of similar 125s (I won't say template 125s, because despite the obvious similarities, I think they are quite distinct in feel and character), what do you do? I think this question was posed to someone in Bajaj regarding the steady, but not stellar sales on the Discover.

The answer is quite pleasant. Someone decided to shake the very foundations of the segment by upping the displacement. We have seen this done already, of course. The Ambition was nothing more than an overgrown (and too early for its time) 125. Ditto the Apacher RTR 160. And now, the Bajaj Discover 135 DTSi.

I rode one yesterday, and I thought it was nice. It feels laid back (which is scary, because the last time I rode a P200, it felt laid back too; and I loved the very not-calm original generation P180 a lot, lot more) but it isn't slow. Speed builds rapidly and the 135 will eat a 125, any 125 for performance. Handling is similar, but the fatter rubber (it isn't tubeless like you read here) makes it feel a little more planted, and a little slower to turn. But the difference is marginal and not something that should make or break a buying decision, I think. Braking is better, no surprise there, seeing that the Disco has regained the 240 mm disc unit it was born with. Ride quality should have been better thanks to the gas shocks, but I don't think the difference is going to be earth shattering. I for one thought they ride quality was all right, but since I haven't ridden a SNS Disco in quite a while, my ride quality assessment could be totally out of whack. If you've ridden a D135 and a D125 recently please post a specific comment on the D135s ride quality, please. Fuel economy is similar to the 125s, I'm told so the VFM perception shouldn't be an issue. The price difference is Rs 3000, which is roughly the step-up when you buy a disc version of a drum-braked price. From that perspective, the Rs 57,000-odd on-road in Mumbai, is money well spent.

Now, I have a question. If the Disco 135 did remarkably well in the market, do you think it should replace the Disco 125 entirely? That would make sense, would it not? Especially given that Bajaj intends to offer 125cc products in the entry-level (100cc) segment soon...

Related post:Discover 135 DTSi: Specs |Bajaj Discover 135: Some details
Image: bajajdiscover.com

5 comments:

Glifford said...

The normal way to make a designer gown even more classy and upmarket is to stud it with Swarovski crystals. Or, if you are really, really rich, use real diamonds and charge the earth.

Check out: http://www.engadget.com/2007/04/13/philips-and-swarovski-offer-up-crystal-clad-usb-drives/

Speed builds rapidly and the 135 will eat a 125, any 125 for performance.

Does it feel the lack of the 5th speed. Could it stand up in a death match against the Gladiator or face the Heat with Zeus?


Now, I have a question. If the Disco 135 did remarkably well in the market, do you think it should replace the Disco 125 entirely? That would make sense, would it not? Especially given that Bajaj intends to offer 125cc products in the entry-level (100cc) segment soon...

Maybe! The Sonic you mean! But then the Sonic will lie bang in the middle of the Discover 112 and the Disco 135!

Julian Paul said...

Ok can someone please confirm the number of gears ???????

Anonymous said...

how the gearbox,is it the same as the old one (notchy) ?

rearset said...

No, the gearbox is better. The all-down shift pattern is a royal pain in the arse, though.

Satadru said...

Speed builds rapidly and the 135 will eat a 125, any 125 for performance.

This it does with aplomb. Personally, I have outrode a Di125, Achiever and a Libero on NH6 at speeds in excess of 80 kmph, and have lived to tell the tale. And I am no lightweight at 95 kilos!


Ok can someone please confirm the number of gears ???????

There are 4 gears in all-down pattern.

how the gearbox,is it the same as the old one (notchy) ?

The one that I own, has a gearbox which, on rare occasions, throws up false neutrals when I am shifting gears between the 1st and the 2nd, at speeds below 20 kmph.

But this bike really yearns for a 5th gear. Had this machine been endowed with such, I could have possibly stopped hunting for the next gear at speeds over 70 kmph!!!

The best part of this bike, which I like most, is the torque aka the pulling power at real slow speeds. May be it is not as strong as its more capacious (read bigger engine sizes ) cousins, viz., Pulsars 150/180/200/220, but the price vis-a-vis package balance does provide for some satisfaction ;-)

Would I recommend this bike?

An emphatic "Yes" would be the answer for all those who have outgrown a 100 cc, but still has the laid-back commuter attitude which stops short of making a dash towards the 150 cc+ sports bikes!

Cheers and safe riding to all!