Bajaj Auto was once the leader in the Indian sports biking segment. However, with increasing competition from sister-brand KTM and other rivals like Benelli and Kawasaki, the company lost a major share of its sales. Moreover, Indian customers gradually started shifting towards mid-size capacity bikes (350 – 500 cc), and Bajaj didn’t really have a product in this category. This is what motivated the Indian bike maker to launch a completely new brand in its portfolio – the Bajaj Dominar 400!
For anyone looking for a sports tourer in the middle-weight segment, the Dominar 400 offers a perfectly viable option. Like every other product, it has its share of pros and cons. Hence, we list the top 5 important things that you must know about the Dominar 400, before finalizing it as your next purchase.
1. Attractive price
The biggest plus point of the Dominar 400’s package is the price point at which it is being offered. Currently, the Bajaj Dominar 400 is available at a price of Rs 1.42 lakh for the standard variant and Rs 1.56 lakh for the ABS version (all prices ex-showroom, Delhi). This makes it around Rs 75,000 cheaper than the KTM Duke 390, with which the bike shares its powertrain. Other bikes in the segment also cost a lot more that the Dominor 400, while offering even fewer features. This high value-for-money (VFM) package of the Bajaj Dominar 400 is essentially its biggest strength. At the said price point, the Dominar makes perfect sense for riders who want to join the ‘big bike’ craze, but aren’t willing to shell out huge lumps of cash to do so.
2. Loaded to the brim with features
If the aforementioned price tag isn’t enough to entice you towards buying the Dominar 400, its feature list surely will do the job. Despite being cheaper than all its direct rivals, the Dominar 400 is offered with truck loads of features. Some of these include full LED headlamps, all digital instrument cluster, dual-channel ABS, disc brakes at the front and rear, and slipper clutch. Hence, the Dominar 400 offers the most features for the buck, even in comparison to bikes of a segment above!
3. Average build quality
A comparatively lower price point will obviously result in some limitations in the product, and in the Dominar 400’s case, this is apparent in the bike’s build quality. The overall feel and finish of materials used in the bike is a notch lower than what is available on the KTM Duke 390 or other direct rivals. Moreover, some customers have complained about rattling issues around the bike’s fuel tank after some basic use. This can be a cause of concern for customers who are looking for a premium bike that lasts the distance without any rattling issues. However, reports suggest that Bajaj has addressed such issues during the past year and the newer models are less prone to experience the same.
4. Prioritized safety
Despite being offered at an extremely competitive price tag, the Dominar 400 doesn’t really compromise in the safety department. The bike comes with dual-channel ABS. This means that the front as well as rear brakes are individually monitored and manipulated to ensure that the wheels don’t lock during emergency braking situations. Moreover, the Dominar comes with disc brakes at the front as well as rear, with the front being a best-in-class 320 mm-dia unit. As a result, the Dominar 400 can easily be claimed to be the safest bike in the Indian market, below the Rs 2 lakh rupee bracket.
5. Potent powertrain
In the middle-weight bike segment, the engine is an extremely vital part of how luring can a motorcycle be. The Dominar 400 has hit the nail in the right place by using the KTM Duke 390’s engine as a base and developing it to include Bajaj’s famed triple spark technology. The result is a 373.3 cc, single-cylinder, 4-valve DTS-i engine that comes with liquid cooling and fuel injection. It is mated to a 6-speed gearbox and is capable of churning out 35 PS and 35 Nm of peak torque. All this translates to a smooth and linear power delivery across the rev range, without any major vibrations even at triple digit speeds.