The Bajaj Dominar 400 was first launched in 2016, and it was launched to establish an all-new genre from Bajaj Auto's line-up, that of a sporty, 'power cruiser'. The Dominar 400 is loosely based on the KTM 390 Duke, borrowing the basic engine architecture, the 373 cc, single-cylinder powerplant, but with a different state of tune, making it more relaxed for touring, and with a meaty torque across the rev range. It became Bajaj Auto's most powerful motorcycle, and in these few years since it was launched it has developed a strong fan following, even if it did not go on to meet the initial expectations Bajaj Auto had in terms of sales volumes.
But motorcycle sales data paints a different picture. While the Dominar 400 established the brand, it is the 250 cc segment which has been showing a lot of promise, with growth of around 40 per cent. And although this segment is low on volumes, margins make it a very attractive place for manufacturers to be in, as is evident over the past couple of years. So, there's quite a few of the 250c now available on sale, from the Yamaha FZ-25, Suzuki Gixxer 250, and even Bajaj-owned KTM 250 Duke which are all vying for a piece of the pie. So, now enter the Bajaj Dominar 250, with the same design as its bigger sibling, with an engine based on the 250 Duke, and an attractive price tag that Bajaj intends to attract new buyers with. So, what does the new Bajaj Dominar 250 offer? Here's a look at what is different, and what is new.
Engine & Performance
The engine may be based on the KTM 250 Duke, but the 248.8 cc, single-cylinder, DOHC engine puts out 26.6 bhp at 8,500 rpm and peak torque of 23.5 Nm at 6,500 rpm. On the KTM 250 Duke, the same engine puts out 29.6 bhp at 9,000 rpm, and 24 Nm at 7,500 rpm. So, on paper at least, the Dominar 250's engine looks like it's tuned for better mid-range than outright top-end performance. The gearbox is a six-speed unit with a slipper clutch, which should be helpful in traffic and while changing gears frequently. According to Bajaj, the Dominar 250 is capable of acceleration from 0-100 kmph in 10.5 seconds, with a claimed top speed of 132 kmph.
Design & Features
In terms of design, the Bajaj Dominar 250 looks more or less identical to the bigger Dominar 400, apart from very subtle changes, and of course, two colours - Canyon Red and Vine Black. The instrument console is from the previous generation Dominar 400, with the tell-tale lights on a separate panel on the fuel tank. The 17-inch alloy wheels have the same design, but on the 250, Bajaj has employed a full matte-black finish, compared to the dual-tone finish on the Dominar 400.
Dimensions are also identical with the Dominar 400, with an overall length of 2156 mm, width of 836 mm, height of 1112 mm, and ground clearance of 157 mm. Like the Dominar 400, the Dominar 250 also employs a fuel tank with 13 litre capacity. The only thing which has changed is the kerb weight; the Dominar 250 comes with a 180 kg kerb weight, compared to 184 kg kerb weight of the Dominar 400, but it's still at least 11 kg heavier than the KTM 250 Duke with a kerb weight of 169 kg.
The Bajaj Dominar 250 runs on 17-inch alloy wheels, but the wheels are shod with narrower rubber than the Dominar 400. While the 400 uses a 110-section front tyre and a 150-section rear tyre, the Dominar 250 comes with a 100-section front tyre and a 130-section rear tyre. While braking duties are handled by dual-channel ABS, the front disc of the Dominar 250 is slightly smaller, with a 300 mm disc, compared to the 320 mm disc on the Dominar 400. Like the 400, the Dominar 250 also has a beam type perimeter frame, but has a slightly smaller 37 mm upside down front fork, compared to the 43 mm front fork of the Dominar 400.
Pricing & Market Positioning
The Bajaj Dominar 250 is priced at ₹ 1.60 lakh (Ex-showroom, Delhi), which is ₹ 30,000 less than the Dominar 400, priced at ₹ 1.90 lakh (Ex-showroom, Delhi). And it's ₹ 40,000 less expensive than the KTM 250 Duke, priced at ₹ 2.00 lakh (Ex-showroom, Delhi). At that price, it squares up against the likes of the Suzuki Gixxer 250 ( ₹ 1.6 lakh), as well as the Yamaha FZ-25 ( ₹ 1.35 lakh). What the Dominar 250 offers is a more robust appearance and touring-friendly ergonomics, which Bajaj will hope will be the big differentiator in the 200-250 cc motorcycle segment.