The Bajaj Dominar has always been one of the most powerful and feature-loaded motorcycles one could buy for the least amount of money. It had LED headlamps, dual-channel ABS, a liquid cooled engine, a slipper clutch and loads of equipment, not offered by any other motorcycle in the same zip code. Surprisingly, it did not go on to be a huge success in the market as everybody anticipated it to be, and the reasons for it were cited as neither being a proper tourer, nor a proper sports bike. It was somewhere in the middle, and even though it targeted a pretty huge segment which comprised of Royal Enfield motorcycles, for some reason it didn’t quite garner the numbers that it attempted.
However, for 2019, Bajaj has made some significant changes to the Dominar and these changes are not just limited to the body panels or some features which are on the surface. A lot of other things which were very important from the customers’ perspective have now been changed. In this review, we’ll try to cover all the changes made to the new Dominar in an easy to read question and answer format.
- What are the design highlights of the 2019 Bajaj Dominar?
- What are the engine and performance related changes in the latest Dominar 400?
- How does the new Bajaj Dominar perform?
- How well does the Dominar ride and handle?
- What are the features I get in the new Dominar 400?
- What’s the expected price for the 2019 Dominar?
- What’s your verdict?
What are the design highlights of the 2019 Bajaj Dominar?
The thick 43mm USD (Up-Side Down) forks make the front of this motorcycle look meatier, and a little bit more committed. Another big design highlight is the new chunky dual barrel exhaust, which doesn’t just look good but also has a very bassy and throaty sound, making it much better than the exhaust it replaces. The alignment of the LED headlamp is the same, though, with a colour element, the lamp unit itself looks a bit more premium. On the tail lamp, the reflectors or the guidelights have now been slightly rearranged to add a more premium feel to it. The blinkers up front and at the rear are LEDs as well as it always has been the case.
It feels like a very big and substantial machine. The bike as a whole has a new colour scheme known as, ‘Auroral green’ and this is a new introduction. For now, the Dominar is available in green and black and more colours will most likely be introduced at a later point in time as the demand arises. Another change that you may notice on this motorcycle is the tank pad which has now been replaced by a more premium unit that has been inspired by a spaceship as told by Bajaj.
The other small change is on the seat and it’s been hot stamped with this D logo on the pillion seat. The other important changes are; The rearview mirror has now been changed, its mounts are made of cast aluminium and the shape of this has been changed. It gives the motorcycle a more futuristic, and a more premium look. The mirrors are now wider, to increase the field of vision. To enhance the design and practicality of the Dominar as a sports tourer, Bajaj tied up with Autologue design, which is into fabrication of touring accessories and a lot of aesthetic as well as functional modifications and these accessories will be available directly through dealerships and these would include things like panniers, a bigger windscreen, etc. These accessories would be available at Bajaj dealerships and the tourers among you can buy those accessories directly from the dealerships.
What are the engine and performance related changes in the latest Dominar 400?
The main changes that have been made to the new 2019 Dominar’s engine is the inclusion of DOHC (Dual-overhead camshaft). Power output has been bumped up to 40 PS which is now only about 3-3.5 PS shy of the Duke 390. So, the Dominar is now in close proximity to the KTMs in terms of its performance. However, the torque remains the same at 35 Nm. The compression ratio has been pumped up from 11.3:1 to 12.1:1.
The central focal point of the headlamps is now coloured for an aggressive and meaner look. The Dominar also comes with a slipper clutch and all the necessary dynamic information is availed through the trip computer. The new mono suspension which remains the same in terms of its geometry now gets new spring ratings that make the ride softer. The Forged steel side stand is one of the many important changes that give this bike a fresh new appeal along with practicality.
How does the new Bajaj Dominar perform?
Now coming specifically to the performance of the Dominar, the 0-60 kmph timing of this motorcycle is now quicker by 0.4 seconds. 0-60 kmph is now in 2.7 seconds, the previous version did it in 3.1 seconds. The 0-100 run comes in 7.1 seconds now, the previous motorcycle did it in 8.23 seconds, so there is a difference of more than 1.1 seconds in 0-100 timings, and all that is down to the fact that there is 5 PS more power.
For the bump in compression ration, the engine sputters a little bit before 2500 RPM. So below that engine speed, the motor is going to knock a little bit if you carry too high a gear, however, it smoothens out at about 3000 RPM, from where the power starts building. At 5,000 rpm, you really feel the strong mid range of this motorcycle kicking in and at about 6000 RPM the motor is in its zone, where it can overtake even at high gears and mid-revs very swiftly.
The power at the bottom of the rev range could have been slightly better. However, an in-gear speed test revealed that the first gear will take you to 58 kmph, the second gear will take you to 83 kmph, the third gear will take you to 110 kmph, and the fourth gear is going to take you all the way up till 135 kmph. The top speed of this motorcycle has gone up to 156 kmph and it should easily be able to reach 160 kmph on the speedometer. The 2019 Dominar has an average fuel efficiency of 27 kmpl as per ARAI, and a real-world mileage of 22 kmpl.
How well does the Dominar ride and handle?
The weight of the Dominar has slightly gone up by 2 kgs, and that’s because of a variety of reasons including the changes made to the engine. The new exhaust and the wider handlebars add some more weight of the bike. But, in terms of handling the Dominar is a very capable bike, but with the increase in power, the tires could have been better. Even though the width of the handlebars has been increased, the rider triangle is the same. The new mono suspension which remains the same in terms of its geometry, but has new spring ratings that help the Dominar ride softer.
What are the features I get in the new Dominar 400?
The 320mm front disc brake is carried forward from the previous model but now gets radially mounted callipers. the wheel size, the tire size and the model of the tire everything remains the same. The Dominar now gets an LCD secondary display which displays the gear position indicator, a clock. The gear position indicator being here is a bit of a disappointment because looking down at the secondary display at a high speed is not very safe. The main panel has a Dot Matrix display which shows a lot of information including average fuel efficiency, average fuel consumption for the first trip, average fuel consumption for the second trip, dynamic or instantaneous fuel efficiency. You also get the distance to the next service, and the Fuel Gauge here. This motorcycle has a red light that starts blinking at 9000 RPM and the limiter cuts in somewhere between 9500 to 10000 RPMs. The ABS, neutral, malfunction, warning sign and the red light indicators are at the bottom of the primary display. The fuel tank capacity remains the same at 13 litres. The very important change that Bajaj has made to this motorcycle is keeping in mind the needs of the tourers by adding a new forged steel side stand which is robust and can take a lot more weight. Talking about touring, Bajaj has now included bungee cord fasteners to tie important luggage during touring, which are tucked under the pillion seat very neatly. By Bajaj’s acceptance, these bungee cord fasteners are not meant for very serious tourers, but this obviously is a very handy thing for the not-so-serious tourers amongst you. Another small change is the crash guard, which is slightly wider now.
What’s the expected price for the 2019 Dominar?
The expected price for the Dominar is around INR 1,80,000 (ex-showroom).
What’s your verdict?
Well, if you want to buy a motorcycle which is under 2 lakhs, then the Dominar is a very considerable option as there is no other motorcycle that comes close to this motorcycle in terms of features performance and price. If you are looking to purchase a motorcycle in the sub 2 lakh category go ahead and take a test ride of the Bajaj Dominar. Bajaj is also offering a 5 year or 75000 km (whichever is first) warranty which would give you a stress-free ride.
2019 Bajaj Dominar 400 Specifications
|Engine capacity||373.2 cc|
|Maximim Power||39.9 PS @ 8,650 rpm|
|Maximum Torque||35 Nm @ 7,000 rpm|
|Transmission||6-speed constant mesh|
|Shift Pattern||1 down, 5 up|
|Engine Lubrication||Pressurised oil supply|
|Engine Cooling||Liquid cooled|
|Ground Clearance||157 mm|
|Kerb Weight||184.5 kg|
|Front Suspension||USD forks|
|Rear suspension||Mono-shock with nitrox|
|Front brake||320 mm disc|
|Rear Brake||230 mm disc|
|Front Tyre||110/70 – R17|
|Rear Tyre||150/60 – R16|
|Fuel Capacity||13 litres|
|Usable Reserve||3 litres|
|Unusable reserve||600 ml|
2019 Bajaj Dominar 400 Images