The long wait is finally over for all the bike enthusiasts in India. The much awaited Dominar 400, the flagship model of Bajaj has arrived. This new model is derived from their own concept model Pulsar 400 CS, which was showcased at 2014 Auto Expo. With some minor changes from the displayed model, this one will be delivered to customers from January 2017. Earlier this year there were rumours regarding the branding of this new Bajaj motorcycle. Pulsar 400 VS, Kratos 400 and Pulsar 400 CS were those names in the limelight. The official name is derived from Spanish language which means, "To Excel". And Bajaj is ready to excel in many areas with their new flag bearer.
Dominar 400 is powered by the same mill that powers KTM Duke 390. It uses 373.3cc, liquid cooled, triple spark, DTS-i engine with closed fuel injection system. In Duke 390 this engine delivers 43 bhp power, meanwhile in Dominar 400 it is tuned down to 35PS power @ 8000 rpm and a peak torque of 35Nm @ 6500 rpm. Engine is then meshed with a 6-speed gearbox using slipper clutch mechanism enabling smooth and precise gear shifting. The crankshaft of this bike is lightweight and being forged to bring out maximum output.
The engine sits in between a massive perimeter frame which provides lateral strength and torsional rigidity to the bike. The 43 mm telescopic forks at the front and multi-step adjustable mono shock at the rear deals with suspension of this motorcycle. Dominar is equipped with a dual channel ABS system for efficient braking. Not only that a 320 mm front disc and 230 mm rear disc brake is considered to be the largest in its class.
It looks similar to the concept model Pulsar CS 400, once showcased in 2014 Auto Expo. The engineers of Bajaj have taken great effort in design and styling of the Dominar. Surely this cruiser sport will have a massive road presence with its dominating looks from the front. As they claims, the Leo Stance inspired design principle gives distinctive-aggressive face to the Dominar. It is the first model from Bajaj to feature LED headlamps with vertical Auto Headlamp On (AHO). This mosaic shaped headlight meets European standards by making it visible from 1.5 kms. The larger contoured fuel tank, broad handlebars, and the engine cowl gives a fine muscular look to the bike.
Dominar 400 is the first Bajaj to feature full LCD instrument panel. It is divided into primary and secondary consoles in order to reduce the jumble in cockpit. This would avoid distraction for the rider and enables to concentrate more on the road. The instrument cluster is very informative with some valuable features like tachometer, odometer, speedometer, clock, fuel gauge, service indicator and ABS indicator.
Performance And Handling
The low centre of gravity design of the Dominar delivers unmatched handling experience. The wider rear tyres gives a sporty appeal and it also provides a firm grip over the tarmac at higher speeds. Specially designed low-profile tyres are used in Dominar 400, which ensures stability while cornering. The low sit saddle along with broad handle bars gives the rider a smooth cruiser experience.
As the vehicle is yet to be test driven, the performance figures are all tested and recorded by Bajaj itself under standard conditions. According to them it can accelerate from 0 to 100 kmph in 8.23 seconds which is quiet amazing. Top speed of this bike is said to be at 148 kmph, which is way below the adopted sibling Duke 390. The use of slipper clutch enables precise gear shifting at high speeds and performs very well across all rev bands.
The price tag of Dominar 400 is quiet surprising. After considering all the stats and figures of this motorcycle, it competes with Kawasaki Z250, Benelli TNT 300 and Duke 390 which is highly overpriced than the Bajaj. The Twin channel ABS version of Dominar is available at 1.50 lakh (ex-showroom Delhi), and said to be the cheapest sports bike available in India with this many performance figures. Dominar 400 comes with BSIV emission norms, that will be huge boost for their market place for a long term.
Bajaj targets the prime market share of Royal Enfield 350, who has been sole ruler in this segment for a long period of time. We have to wait till January to fetch more long term and customer reviews of Dominar 400, as the delivery of this bike commences from 2017 January. This may be the motorcycle that Bajaj has been waiting for a long time to change their fortunes in premium department. Lets hope for the best.