Review: Bajaj Discover 150F and 150S

Posted by Girish Karkera at 06:14 am on Friday August 15, 2014

Seven. That’s the total number of variants currently listed for the Discover on Bajaj’s website. It spans different engine sizes and includes ‘new’ and ‘old’ Discover models being sold alongside at a showroom near you. Yes, it is a bit confusing and thankfully, Bajaj has realised it and is now putting the house in order by introducing two new models at the top of the Discover pyramid.

Don’t get confused, because very soon, there will be only four Discover models on sale including these new ones.

There is little doubt that the Discover is a well-known brand in the 125cc segment, but Bajaj says it saw a need to bridge the current gap between the commuter Discover and the performance Pulsar brand. And the solution was to develop an all-new, 145cc-displacing, 4-valve unit which is now powering the Discover 150F and Discover 150S.

Mechanically, both are identical. Chassis, engine, transmission, suspension are all the same. The difference is that the 150F has a half fairing like the one on the Pulsar 220, which houses a digital-analog instrument cluster. The 150S sports a regular bikini fairing that houses simpler analogue instrumentation.

Design-wise, there is the very familiar Discover tank with similar-looking decals. Wheels are the typical alloy design we see on other bikes with the same name. It is easy on the eye, and if not for the fairing, many would not be able to distinguish between the Discover 150 and its other siblings. In fact, it is not a new thing, this half fairing. We've seen this on the Honda Stunner and Hero Ignitor when it comes to sub-150cc bikes and to be a step ahead, Bajaj is offering similar design cues but in a more powerful bike.

The new engine offers 14.3bhp of peak power, which is much more than even a Unicorn, albeit at 500rpm more than the Honda. It also churns out 12.75Nm of torque, but at a highish 6500rpm. But the good news is, it’s a very free-revving unit. Also, the low-resistance throttle should make city riding easier. There is more than enough power for a bike of this size, which can never be a bad thing. Thankfully, the disc/drum brake combo works perfectly.

It's pretty easy to ride, the 150. The riding position, to put it simply, is comfortable. Handling is predictable and the reasonably light weight and ample power only make things better. While engine refinement is better than early Discover models, there are still some vibrations that creep in as speed builds up. It's not exactly intrusive, but could have been better. Also, switchgear and general fit-and-finish of body panels isn’t exactly top-notch.

The Discover 150 is an able commuter bike in overall terms. It is comfortable to ride, and should be easy on the pocket. Bajaj claims it will return a real-world figure of 55-60 kilometres on a litre of petrol. The 150F will cost around Rs 65,000 on-road, which makes it one of the cheapest 150cc bikes in India. For someone looking at a regular commuter bike with reasonable power and not wanting to be intimidated by its size and price, the Discover 150 fits in well.

The numbers
1cyl, 144.8cc, 14.3bhp, 12.75Nm, 5M, 55-60kpl (claimed), Wheelbase: 1305mm, Ground Clearance: 165mm, Seat height: 795mm, 130 (S)-132kg (F), Fuel tank: 10 litres, Rs 52,000 (drum)-55,000 (disc) (150S)/ Rs 59,000 (150F) (ex-showroom, Delhi)

The verdict
A more powerful Discover to help you cut down on that daily commute time. Could have been better finished, but they make up for that flaw with a competitive price tag

TAGS// discover 150, 150s, 150f, discover, bajaj

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