Bajaj Discover 125 DTSi (2007 Model) Review by Arunkumar

by Deepak on April 3, 2012

Introducing myself, this is Arunkumar, an oil and gas professional, a Chemical engineering graduate from Anna university, Chennai, mad on bikes, bike riding and bike science. I stay at Medavakkam, an out skirt of Chennai.

It was on May 2007 I had brought a Bajaj Discover 125 which was launched in all black for the first time in India. Before that, I was planning for the Apache 150. As soon as I saw it I fell in love with it and changed the plan of Apache because its looks certainly attracted everyone (during those days, there were not much competition in the 125CC category) and was also 7000 bucks cheaper than the Apache.

The bike costed 52,500/- out of which I paid 20,500/- as down payment and had to opt for the EMI option since bike was inevitable for my commuting as I had to travel 40 kms a day.

Because those were the days I had just learnt riding geared bikes and I was novice to bike riding. As soon as I started riding my bike, it kindled the rider inside me and whenever I had to ride my bike, I ride with interest, no matter how old it is. Those were the days I did not have more cognizance about how to select a bike which would last long with proven durability, reliability and quality.

Let’s get into the categorical review and I don’t want to make a movie out of it because I’m not much satisfied with the bike. This is not a mere review, This Is A Warning!

Looks

I don’t want to compare the bike with the present 125 CC bikes which are highly advanced in style. But during 2007, Discover really embossed its looks in my heart. But anyway, my bike looks good for me still, as it looked in the beginning.

That is the basic feeling every biker should have, without it, no one can ride it with all his heart. Technically speaking, the handle bar design is good with its wide angle grips which were fitted with weight balancers which don’t work much in balancing! Petrol tank when looked from the back is good.

Engine And Performance

I am sure that people reading this review wont like much tech specs of the outdated Discover model, but that is one which completes a review, isn’t it? Ok now, it has a 125CC engine with 11.5 bhp of power which is still the most powerful engine in the 125CC category except the KTM 125 (I don’t exactly know what KTM 125′s power is), four speed manual gear box, air cooled engine and with a push-rod and rocker arm type of valve arrangement (I hope so) and two spark plugs.

During the run-in period I handled the bike just like a new born baby, since handling the bike during the run-in period is definitely going to destine the life of the engine. During the early days, upto 1 year of the purchase of the bike, Discover proved to be very good and out-performed all its competitors. Due to double spark plugs, the power delivery was gradual at all speeds.

But this applies only upto 2.5 years of the purchase of the bike. The engine was not that vibrant, but was good in throttle response. Now, it is the time to open my heart about the Bajaj product which is a baby in the 3 “TYs”, i.e., Quality, Reliability, Durability. This is the department where the Bajaj people have to learn from the kinder garten level. No match for the Yamaha, Honda and Suzuki! More false neutrals, notchy and faulty gearbox.

Around 8000 kms, the bike started to perform very low despite I was keen at maintenance logs. I had to change the valves, inlet and outlet, since my personal mechanic advised me to do so. I always take my bike to my personal mechanic because the Bajaj service center guys learned more to deceive than to do a genuine service. The service center guys do not know much concerning the engine.

They just know how to dismantle and mantle the bike. They almost never tuned my bike properly as my personal mechanic did. After the valve replacement, I started to face the worst days of my bike riding. I started to hear a “grr” sound from the engine which was perhaps the sound of the hydraulic valve tappet (as per my knowledge, woe to the push-rod arrangement of Bajaj!) for which my personal mechanic told which should not be changed for a month since the new set of valves had to set in.

Oh my God, I was so irritated to ride the bike with that “grr” sound since it robbed all my riding pleasure. After a month when I took the bike to my mechanic hoping to curb that awkward sound, he frustrated me saying that riding with that sound should be OK and it should not be adjusted in. I became annoyed of his words. Afterwards riding the bike for some months, I took it to the service center to have it curbed.

After that, the clutch plate had gone. I had to replace it and it was done.

During 18000 kms, I started to hear a ratting sound in the engine when I cross 50 kmph for which the service center guys advised me to change the cam chain. As soon as I changed the cam chain, I started to hear the same “grr” sound again for which another mechanic said that it couldn’t be curbed since Bajaj was a noise engine unlike the Honda and Yamaha.

What an irresponsible answer! There are mechanics who do not even know the difference between the sound of engine and sound of tappets or at least they are such indolent to meet the customer’s needs. Upto 30000 kms, the performance for OK and was not upto a frustrating level.

As I crossed 40000 kms, I lost my gearbox. I started to hear a “pada pada” sound when I shifted to the 4th gear at 40 kmph. My mechanic advised me to ride the bike with it since after some time, he wanted to change the valve set-up, gear shaft and some thing additionally. But being a normal middle class person, I could not afford for frequent maintenance tortures my bike gave me.

Now, I have crossed 65000 kms, this is the first time I ever met a minor accident in my bike. I never met an accident upto that since I glued myself to the traffic rules and always wore a helmet for my commuting. It was the fault of a pedestrian on whom I dashed my bike. Thank God, I escaped with minor scratches and he, with almost no injuries.

Now, the bike just does like an old man which climbs a staircase. It takes more time just to reach 40 kmph! But the bike is very powerful in the 60-80 kmph section. That is all it does. I did not take the watch but it may be more than 5 second to cross 40. The bike is very sluggish. Now there I a potential and a peculiar problem I am meeting. The engine does turns off itself when on idle (not due to low idling speed).

When ever I idle my bike at signals, it turns off, out of which I am experiencing grave tortures in Chennai’s traffic. The mechanic cleaned the carburetor twice, but it still does persist. Now I’m still riding with this problem and couldn’t take it for service due to some financial reasons. Goes off, in traffic and I have to use the self starter to switch it on and goes of again and again. The engine operation is not constant and rises automatically when I steer to the right, which my mechanic always used to ignore. “More Woes Per Mile!”

Mileage

Mileage figures were well in the starting periods. Gave between 65-68 kmpl during the first year. But now, it gives around 40 kmpl only. Readers, note, I used to change the engine oil every 3 months even if I my economy prevent me to leave the bike for maintenance. Mileage is worse than a 150cc mill. Since the engine was not responsive, I used to twist the throttle hard for pick-up.

Braking

Braking at the front wheel is good. But braking at the rear wheel during emergencies is just like placing my head at the rail track myself. The bike skids badly when braked hard at rear, the bike pulls towards right during hard braking. This is because the weight is not properly balanced and distributed. The condition goes worse in wet roads, not lesser than even the Apache’s tyres!

Tyres

Stock tyres were Dunlop which was so bad against punctures and braking as well. I had to spend more on puncture repair frequently. Then I switched to MRF Zapper-C which was a boon for me against punctures. They offered superior stability and were planted to the road well.

Trust me, the bike has run more than 30000 kms with MRF, till now, I have faced only a single puncture, even with the punctured tyre, the bike ran for two weeks before I noticed it was a puncture. Thanks to tubeless tyres of MRF. They look good still now and perhaps will run more before it demands a replacement. I will call this the only good part of the bike.

Electricals

Unlike the latest Pulsars, it has an AC system. There is nothing bad about the electrical section since Bajaj itself is a brand name for electricals since it manufactures fans, irons etc which does good. Switches and controls are of good quality but the pass light goes mad temporarily during heavy rain and come good again.

Stock headlight is Halonix which performs well till now and one indicator did fuse which was replaced in the earlier days. But sometimes, the turn indicators blink in a frequency more than the normal. Hence I would advice the readers never start an AC operated bike with headlight and turn lights on, which may damage them.

Conclusion

Besides suffering, I always enjoy the ride because I am used to it and always enjoy with what I have, but seriously seeking to switch to another bike and waiting for the right time since my economy does not allow me to do that now. I will never advise a Bajaj product for anyone (Pulsar maniacs, please forgive me).

They are showy and powerful (power which fades after 2 years) but lack reliability that Hero Honda (now HMC), Honda, Yamaha, Suzuki & RE offer. Now, I am planning for a TBTS, R15 version or some nice bike in the category 150-200. I don’t know how P200 NS is going to perform. I would appreciate Bajaj if they have put efforts in the quality department.
Readers, if you want to suggest me a good bike, please go on. No 125cc, because I’m planning to take the bike for long rides. I have some crush on the Apache RTR 180. What do u guys say? How is its quality and reliability? Please feel free to comment in this section.

(P.S: This review may seem to be a complaint box against the Bajaj Discover. But I swear it is purely based on my experience and I am posting this review as an eye opener and not in an intention to discredit the Bajaj brand. Pulsar enthusiasts, please forgive me)

Regards,
Arunkumar

Remain Updated! Get these articles delivered right into your mailbox.
Subscribe for FREE!

Like & Comment Via Facebook...

{ 21 comments… read them below or add one }

fas April 3, 2012 at 8:48 am

Hopefully no one will loose their gearbox post 40000 kms in the new Discover.

Reply

vijay bhuyan April 3, 2012 at 9:05 am

vry true BRO, My 13 months old 7600km run pulsar 180 ug4 is full of faults.
eagerly waiting to change my ride.

Reply

Anand April 3, 2012 at 9:51 am

I will suggest u Yamaha fazer or Suzuki gs 150r, trust me both these bikes are a breeze on highways. Tvs apache is a good bike but will rattle & vibrate like hell after crossing 55 km/hr. Both Tvs & Bajaj have to learn a lot from their rivalries like Honda, Yamaha, Suzuki,etc.

Reply

Nitin April 5, 2012 at 3:33 pm

Vibration is between 55 to 65 kmph. It is butter smooth between 70 to 110 kmph.

Reply

Sam April 3, 2012 at 12:24 pm

Go ahead with RE.
For the amount of driving you have per year (at least 15K already), best fit would be RE. It will give you comfort, Quality and VFM. Best for long rides. You already have a bike so the waiting period won’t be a problem.

Reply

Adarsh April 3, 2012 at 3:35 pm

Gud review of granny discover bajaj means only raw power wid killer luksss itz lack in durability n realibilty dats y m also bought a new addition yamaha fazer in lava red foe me its fablus gear shifting iz like u r cuttin d butter wid hot knife nw m completed ma 1st 15 days wid fazzy babe whenvr u hve too purchase a new bike jst give it a try it will sure turn ur head its a eye catcher

Reply

Lumen Shawn Lobo April 3, 2012 at 7:40 pm

In case you think of going for a bike of 125cc again, then go for a stunner…. Very reliable and comfortable for long rides… Test ride one for yourself… Great initial pick up too.

Reply

kusmaker April 3, 2012 at 8:57 pm

Hello Arun i read ur article and i totally agree with u on the reliability issue, bajaj persons dont know what reliability is they just keep on adding newer models and after some time when that model fails they add another one, well if u wanta 150cc bike ,unicorn and yamaha sz-r are very good bikes the only problem with unicorn is that of spare parts i dont what is the situation in ur city but trust me man unicorn is a brilliant bike the engine is silk smooth,mileage is also awsome , so go for yamaha or honda and like the way u said that ur quite serious in maintenance then i dont think that u will face any trouble with the bike, and lastly if u honestly want to maintatin ur bike then u have to learn the art of doing it urself, u have to learn lots of things mechanically like valve changing tappet adjustment cam chain replacement etc.

Reply

Shiva April 4, 2012 at 3:01 pm

U have a similar story to me… My dad bought Bajaj Krystal because of its features like pentalock, front fuelling etc. it ran well for 2 years… then problem started… frequent services… battery itself was changed 3 times… it has ran 24k km now… at first can go smooth for 60kmph.. now even 40 vibrates… Also because of instability i met with an accident loosing my front two teeth… and a scar above lips… “Quality, Reliability, Durability” as u said is not at all with Bajaj!

So After many reviews… I’m going for Honda CB Unicorn… So i’ll suggest u the same….

Reply

Kishor Mridha April 6, 2012 at 3:19 pm

I am planning a Bangladesh India Friendship Motorcycle Ride this September + October. The concept is very simple a I want to start my ride from Dhaka to Kolkata continuing to west circumnavigate Indian mainland around 15000 to 20000KM during 70 to 80 days. Why is motorcycle? because it’s mobility, you can ride, stop, no time schedule, if you have map easily can go anywhere? I know it’s risky but I am a responsible motor biker. I traveled many part and all daring highways in Bangladesh with my little Discover 135cc. I have experienced to drive 300-350km daily. Anybody may interest to join with me the trip from Kolkata or any other states? Is there anyone can help me to make this trip? I mean what kind of contribution you can afford to provide/assist me for this amazing trip.

I am Trying to inform Foreign Ministry of Bangladesh and also Indian High Commission at Dhaka.

I want to dedicate this ride to all unknown Indians and Bengali who help Bangladesh to win freedom at 1971.

I send an email to Sirsendhu a member of motor biking club based Kolkata name Rolling Wheels a week ago I think, surprisingly didn’t get any reply from them till today.

Facing lots of problem, funds, sponsor, carnet de passage en dounance, etc.

I am very aware of that it is easy for general people to think me mad, but my brother the trip is definitely tough game for big boys but it is not impossible!

The first and the major problems I am facing is the money, I will be need 700-1000 liters of Petrol, bike repair costs, spare parts, hotel room fare for 70-80 days, food, water etc. I hope to hear from anyone motor bike lover in India soon.

Regards,
Indranil Kishor

Reply

Mandar April 7, 2012 at 10:29 am

Hi, I have read ur comments, Since 2007I m using Bajaj Discover-135 CC. Daily using around 30KM in Mumbai Traffic . I have no problem with bike. I am doing regular servicing after 2500KM & oil (Castrol GTX) change from my personal mechanic.Since 2007 there is no major problem. I agree with rare brake problem during the rainy season it is easily skip on wet road. I have not changed my tyre till 37000KM. There is electical problem during the rainy season for self starter. Perfomance is ok. In Mumbai traffic bike gives 55-60 PKM avg. After all it is depend on personal using & luck.

Reply

anirban chattterjee April 7, 2012 at 5:03 pm

125cc discover 0ld model has many faults so bajaj had stopped its production.
please ride discover135 once all our grievance against bajaj will vanish.

Reply

arunjeva April 8, 2012 at 10:12 pm

Go for Honda unicorn. I am owning it for past 3 and half year. Very decent mileage under 150 cc category. Butter smooth engine. Superb breaking system even at 90 kmph. Thanks for Honda. I ll say that Unicorn is one of the best model from Honda. Always quality speaks.

Reply

manjunatha April 9, 2012 at 7:51 am

tata nano

Reply

nikhil April 29, 2012 at 5:18 pm

hi arun, I was also frustrated of my pulsar 150 then I brought RTR 160. It has owesome handling and power compared to pulsar.I am riding it from the last 2 years and I am satisfied completely with it. I can bet you TVS quality is also way better than bajaj. only spent for oil on my beast RTR 160.
oh yes another thing for the vibration in all RTRs ,it is only between 50-60 kmph and before or after that it is butter smooth. RTR 180 will give you a milage of 40kmpl, but stunning power and throttle response. If you like it go for it,after all I have not seen any quality issues with TVS. Many TVS victors and starcity’s can be still seen on road running for many years unlike bajaj bikes.

Reply

Sajid May 1, 2012 at 6:37 pm

In order to find a sponser, I woud suggest u to contact Bajaj. They will help u. Bcoz u r going to advertize Bajaj Brand. That wold be the quality test for the brand.

Reply

Amit May 19, 2012 at 12:37 pm

Brother Arun Kr

i would 1st of tell u that , presently Bajaj has improved a lot in its Performance parts since last 3 yrs or so. and they have overcomed most of the faults in their products. but, since u already got quiet a bad experience with Bajaj thn i wld suggest u try other brands.
(as per u atated to help u as in which Bike u wld prefer next) I would say to go for SUZUKI GSR150….believe me its a dream in aspects of evryting, a commuter cum sportsbike kind of, and as per yr love for bikes U will be very happy
Go for it brother

Safe riding

Reply

BikeBoss December 25, 2012 at 7:26 pm

Hi Arun,
I have a Discover 2005 model. i totally agree with you on the service center part. They simply wash the vehicle and tell that they have serviced it. Even my bike gives some sound when driving at 55-60. I have to get the parts you mentioned checked by some local mechanic.

Reply

Pranay Upadhye December 28, 2012 at 2:15 pm

Hello,

I have Bajaj Discover 125cc 2007 Model. I havent faced much problems as such, but few things which Arun mentioned are true like service center guys do not service the bike properly, they just wash. Average of my bike has gradually gone down over the years. The bike vibrates at terribly after 55 to 60..

Overall, there are no major issues as such only minor issues are there and I love my ride though it has few issues.

I think Suzuki GS150R is a good and sturdy bike.

Reply

Nikhil March 16, 2014 at 10:33 am

Right from the start I had a gut feeling that you are among quack mechanics. The moment you told that the mechanic can’t handle even the higher revving when you turn right it was confirmed. All he know is change valve sets for everything. Search for a better mechanic my friend. I’m doing 30k and all Over spent upon is a recent gasket change and tappet adjustment.

Reply

Nikhil March 16, 2014 at 10:39 am

For vibration problems his start reading your service manual and keep a close look at what the mechanic does. I’m a mechanical and automation engineer and have seen even the best of the mechanic mechanic doing mistakes. BAJAJ recommends changing the engine passing bushes made of rubber around 30k. The are quite important to reduce that engine vibrations all of you are feeling. Never seen a single mechanic doing that., even the BAJAJ his don’t know it at service centre.

Reply

Leave a Comment

{ 1 trackback }

Previous post:

Next post: