Refined styling, novel features, good ride and an affordable price tag — the Discover DTS-Si makes a sound case for itself

It’s clear that Bajaj is moving along its tight schedule after rolling out the stylish XCD 135 DTS-Si, revamping the Pulsar line-up and also enhancing its existing models by improving their quality and refinement. In July, the manufacturer introduced a new Discover DTS-Si. But does the new Bajaj motorcycle possess the potential for discovering a new commuter market share for Bajaj?

The Discover DTS-Si does not sport a fresh face and shares its silhouette with the original Discover 125 DTS-i. But the all-black treatment to the new 100cc bikes, smart five-spoke alloy wheels, front forks, engine, chain cover and neat-looking sheared silencer manage to mask its age.

A new battery-powered headlight is flanked by twin pilot lamps in the familiar headlamp cluster and provides bright, totally waver-free illumination at night. There are neat twin-pod instruments that offer riders a useful tripmeter, speedometer and fuel gauge, beacons for the turn indicators, neutral warning and battery. We found the grips and levers comfortable to use and the switchgear easy to work with. This includes a blue ride-control switch that helps riders maximise mileage by providing tactile guidance to prevent excessive opening of the throttle. The handle-mounted mirrors give a good view of the world behind.

The Discover 100 sports rubberised gearshift and rear brake pedals that feel comfortable and offer relatively better grip in the wet. The new bike follows the Discover family tradition by displaying its frame around the swingarm pivot region. A blackened alloy grab handle at the rear sits atop a stylish LED tail-lamp. We enjoyed the extra protection provided by the rear mudguard. What’s part of the standard kit on the Discover DTS-Si 100cc is a maintenance-free battery as well as a self-start. Its single-cylinder, air-cooled and four-stroke unit displaces 94.38cc while the engine cylinder sports long-stroke dimensions of bore and stroke measuring 47 x 54.4mm. This is the first of the Bajaj bikes to adopt an improved ‘DTS-Si 2.0’ engine. While DTS-Si or Digital Twin Spark with swirl induction is a Bajaj-patented fuel economy boosting twin-plug technology, version 2.0 claims further benefits of swirl in the combustion chamber while retaining twin spark plugs to aid quicker and more complete combustion cycles. The twin-valve engine also uses a graphite-based piston coating that reduces friction between the piston and cylinder block, thereby increasing engine efficiency. An exhausTEC resonance chamber on the silencer works behind the scenes to further bump up low-end grunt.

Like most 100cc bikes, the Discover 100’s engine is tuned towards fuel economy. The bike pumps out a modest 7.7bhp at 7500rpm, while producing a max torque of 0.8kgm at 5000rpm.

The Discover comes with a five-speed gearbox — a rarity in this segment — that shifts in an all-down pattern via a heel-and-toe-lever. While enthusiasts will welcome this added ratio for its fun factor, some true-blue commuters may find that the extra cog translates into extra work for them when riding in the city.

Engine and ride

There is a good spread of torque throughout the rev range and enough low-end muscle in the powerband to allow the Discover to pull off urban overtaking moves thanks to well-thought-out ratios.

The rubber-mounted engine feels smooth and refined, with vibrations firmly kept at bay. Our performance tests had the Discover completing a 0-60kph dash in 9.78sec with the bike reaching a true maximum speed of 90kph.

The Discover DTS-Si deploys a single downtube frame that splits at the engine and reunites at the swingarm. The swingarm itself is made of rectangle section metal. The new 100 uses twin telescopic forks up front and a pair of adjustable and gas-filled shock absorbers at the rear.

A high handlebar seats riders in an upright posture that’s comfortable for even tall riders. The seat is well padded and adequate for long distance riding. Ride quality is good, really spine-pampering with the bike efficiently soaking up all sorts of road undulations.

At 1305mm, the Discover has among the longest wheelbases in this segment. It does not mind being flicked through traffic.

A combination of 130mm front and 110mm rear drums provide anchorage to the Discover DTS-Si. While brake feel at the lever is always reassuring, feedback from the tyres under heavy braking can be unnerving. Our best stop from 60kph to rest was 22 metres in 2.63 seconds.

Bajaj has done as much as they can to ensure the Discover DTS-Si stays as frugal as can be. The bike returned 62kpl in real-world city riding conditions, and an even more creditable 67.1kpl when out on a highway run.

Verdict

Bajaj’s refined 94.38cc engine is well-suited to city riding and delivers excellent mileage as expected from this segment. The new Discover also impresses with its good ride and light handling.

Accompanied by novel features such as a battery-powered headlight, a five-speed gearbox and an LED tail-lamp at an affordable price-tag this new Discover variant does make a sound case for itself.

Technical data

Engine: Layout Single-cylinder, air-cooled, four-stroke

Displacement: 94.38cc

Max power: 7.7bhp at 7500rpm

Max torque: 0.8kgm at 5000rpm

Specific output: 81.6bhp per litre

Power to weight: 66.9bhp per tonne

Bore/stroke: 47/ 54.4mm

Valve gear: 2 per cylinder, sohc

Compression ratio: 9.8:1

Ignition and fuel CDI, carburettor