Honda CB Twister Vs. Bajaj Discover 100cc

In the past two years the 100cc segment was redefined twice by two launches Bajaj Discover 100cc and Honda CB Twister. One is from India’s second largest two wheeler manufacturer Bajaj Auto and another is from world’s largest two wheeler manufacturer Honda. But what makes these two motorcycles to differ from each other? Let’s try to find it out.


Bajaj Auto rediscovered 100cc segment by launching Bajaj Discover 100cc  in July 2009. It’s the first 100cc bike which is entirely developed by Bajaj Auto and not with the help of Kawasaki. The other 100cc bikes such as Platina (Designs form Wind 125) and CT100 (Based on Kawasaki Boxer) were somewhere uses Kawasaki technology. The bike is mainly designed keeping Indian road conditions in mind and it is positioned as a long distance commuter bike.

Honda CB Twister is the first 100cc segment bike from Honda Motorcycle and Scooters India ltd. The bike is designed keeping global demand for stylish 100cc bike. The idea behind building CB Twister is to build a stylish 100cc commuter bike along with traditional Honda qualities such as fuel efficient and long lasting engine. Honda has positioned CB Twister as most stylish and powerful commuter 100cc bike.


Bajaj Discover has got DTS-Si 2.0 engine from Bajaj R & D team. DTS-Si stands for Digital Twin Spark with Swirl Induction while 2.0 stands for version like Apple iPhone 3,4. This is the same engine platform which was seen on XCD. The single cylinder, air cooled, SOHC, four stroke engine has bore x stroke of 47 x 54.4 mm which gives it engine displacement of 94.38 cc.

The bore/stroke ratio of 0.86 suggests that this is a long stroke engine which generally produces maximum torque at lower speed. The same thing has been seen in its power and torque figure. The maximum power of 7.7 bhp peaks @ 7500 rpm and maximum torque of 7.85 Nm peaks @ 5000 rpm. To churn out every drop of fuel the discover got specially designed pent roof combustion chamber, a molycote piston to reduce friction and Twin spark plug with swirl induction (In this system the spark plug positioned in swirl condition than traditional straight condition) .

Apart from this the ignition is controlled digitally rather than manually which means optimum fuel burn at any given rpm. It is always difficult to incorporate two spark plugs in a small capacity bike like Discover 100cc – The sole reason it took 6 years to launch 100cc DTS-i engine after Bajaj introduced twin spark technology in Pulsar. The bike comes with optional Electric start (previously as a standard feature). I personally like the new feature of auto choke in Discover which is very helpful in a cold morning. You don’t need to give choke – it will automatically start as the engine heats up. I personally liked exhaust note of Bajaj Discover 100cc.

On the other hand Honda CB Twister has got entire new and powerful engine form HMSI. The single cylinder, air cooled, OHC, four stroke engine has bore x stroke of 50 x 55.6 mm which gives it engine displacement of 109.1 cc. The bore stroke ratio stands at 0.90 which means this is also a long stroke engine. With this engine specification the bike is able to produce maximum power of 9 bhp @ 8000 rpm and maximum torque of 9 Nm @ 6000 rpm.

The reason behind CB Twister’s more power and torque compared to Discover is clear advantage of 15 cc. CB Twister figure remind us Bajaj Caliber 115 which was 111.2 cc bike with 9.5 bhp and 9.12 torque figure. CB Twister comes with vicious type air filter which require less maintenance due to its self cleaning nature. This is the feature which Bajaj Discover lacks. To churn out maximum performance out of this 109 cc engine Honda increases the size of intake funnel which supplies fuel from carburetor to combustion head, the twin valves are operated by high lift camshaft with twin air jacket, the offset crankshaft and rocker arms with roller which reduces friction and increase performance.

All these techniques are being used in larger displacement bikes to enhance performance and reduce friction. The exhaust note sounds very loud like sports bike. One more thing I would like to add here that till now we have seen 100cc horizontal engines from Honda in India be it Splendor, CD- Dawn or Passion but this one is vertical engine. The bike comes with optional electric start.

The power to weight ratio for Bajaj Discover stands at 66.96 bhp / tonne which is very low compared to 87.96 bhp / tonne for CB Twister. It is clear that CB Twister is more powerful bike than Bajaj Discover but as far as engine department concerns technology wise Discover has slight over edge on CB Twister engine. Discover’s compression ratio of 9.8 : 01 is higher than CB Twister’s 9.0 : 01 which means CB Twister has less problem with low octane fuel compare to Discover. When it comes to refinement both the engines are refined but CB Twister engine made more noise than Discover at lower speed. At higher speed the reverse is true.

Bajaj Discover: 4/5 | Honda CB Twister: 4.5/5

Throttle Response

In 100cc bike segment people mostly don’t care about throttle response as the 100cc bike are not meant for racing. But we are comparing here bikes which have redefined 100 cc segment. Discover has instant throttle response (provided ride control switch off as it makes you feel some hurdle in accelerating bike from economy zone to performance zone) thanks to TRICS III (III rd generation Throttle responsive ignition control system). This system ensures optimum ignition spark for given amount of engine rpm and throttle opening.

CB Twister uses similar kind of system but with different name of Digital CDI (Digitally controlled ignition) with multi mapping. With single ride Discover gives better feel of throttle response than with pillion ride while CB Twister does not have such problem due to higher torque.

Bajaj Discover: 4/5 | Honda CB Twister: 4.5/5


Discover got 5 speed constant mesh type gearbox which is segment first feature in 100cc segment. It has got toe and heel shifter which is standard in 100cc segment. The gearbox and clutch felt smooth enough but its little bit hard as the bike I tested was new. Discover has short gear ratio which means it generates low torque at lower rpm. The bike comes with Exhaust-TEC system to overcome this problem. Exhaust tech helps the engine to increase torque in low and mid range. Result you can drive Discover at 20 kmph speed in fifth gear without shifting in fourth gear. The torque is well spread across the gears.

Discover has got all down gearshift pattern which I personally don’t prefer but the segment under which Discover operates requires all down or up pattern. The 5 speed gearbox sometimes increases work of gear shifting in traffic but on highway it’s very useful. There is a minimal noise while shifting gear. Overall the clutch and gearbox felt positive but it’s not as smooth as on Pulsar 135 LS or Unicorn.

CB Twister got 4 speed constant mesh type gear box as usual seen in 100cc bike. But it has universal one down 3 up gearshift pattern and only toe shifter something unique in 100cc segment. CB Twister has long gear ratio for better initial pulling power. It has well spread torque across the gear. Not much to talk about Honda’s clutch and gearbox its always class leading however the clutch felt very short and the gearbox does not have smooth and slick feel which we see on Honda Unicorn. You can hear the click noise while shifting gear which was bit louder than Discover’s gearshift noise. Overall the clutch and gearbox could have been better according to Honda standard.

Bajaj Discover: 4/5 | Honda CB Twister: 4/5


Bajaj Discover has Single Down tube type of frame which is specially designed for long distance journey. The frame is single down tube but it splits between the portion of engine and swingarm. Discover uses rectangular swingarm which offers greater stability compare to tube type swingarm. It has longest swingarm in the 100cc segment. It also has longest wheelbase of 1305 mm in the 100cc segment which is very useful while cornering. The bike weighs only 115 kilograms despite having bulkier features like wider tyre, Nitrox suspension etc. It has 162 mm (6.38 inch) of ground clearance which is enough for most of the bumpy riding. Overall the chassis is well built and serves its purpose.

Honda CB Twister has Diamond type twin down tube frame which uses the engine as a stressed member. The frame is rigid and also gives advantage of increased power to weight ratio. As Discover CB Twister also has box type rectangular swingarm but it’s thicker than Discover swingarm and looks attractive too. CB Twister chassis offers optimum control and stability. The wheelbase of 1262 mm is lower than of Discover but it helps very much in city riding conditions. In terms of weight Honda has put CB Twister on strict diet, it weighs only 108 Kg. It has 180 mm (7.09 inch) ground clearance which covers almost any kind of bumpy ride.

Bajaj Discover: 4/5 | Honda CB Twister: 4/5

Tyres and Rim

Bajaj Discover has tyre size of 2.75 x 17 at front and 3.00 x 17 at rear. It has Eurogrip tube type tyre which are not much famous for its road grip but the quality is constantly improving. Discover has firm road grip on dry surfaces and in instant braking condition but in wet conditions the tyre grip was not firm enough like MRF tyres. One thing I would like to add here that Bajaj was first to introduced 17 inch tyre and rim on Discover 125cc in 2004 and after that it has became tradition to use 17 inch tyre and rim. The main benefit of 17 inch tyre and rim is it brings down overall centre of gravity compare to 18 inches tyre and rim. The same thing rider can feel while doing steep cornering at high speed. Overall the wider tyres are doing good job but could have been better with MRF zapper tyres.

CB Twister uses tyre size of 70/100 x 17 (2.75 inch x 17) at front and 80/100 x 17 (3.15 inch x 17) inch tyre at rear. It has MRF Tubeless tyre at front and rear which is segment first feature. The road grip is excellent and sets new benchmark for its class. Although CB Twister has wider tyres compare to Discover, they don’t look that much wide as Discover tyres look.

Bajaj Discover: 3.5/5 | Honda CB Twister: 4.5/5


Bajaj Discover has Telescopic fork as a front suspension which offers travel of 130 mm (5.12 inch) which is highest for 100cc segment. It has got segment first Nitrox Suspension at rear which offers travel rate of 110 mm (4.33 inch). The suspension feel of Discover has really improved after introduction of Nitrox suspension and you can feel this while riding on dirt roads and potholes. Discover comes with anti friction bush in front suspension to increase the suspension life.

As against this CB Twister has Telescopic fork as a front suspension which offers travel of 50 mm (2inches) and spring loaded Hydraulic shock absorber at rear which offers travel of 50 mm (2 inches) same as front suspension (Note: The travel rate for CB Twister was not mentioned in manual. When asked to the salesperson at Honda, he said that it’s 2 inch for front and rear – but I doubt the front suspension travel rate figure). The rear suspension felt very stiffer. Although suspension felt good it is area which leaves room for improvement in CB Twister.

Bajaj Discover: 4.5/5 | Honda CB Twister: 3.5/5


Bajaj Discover has 130 mm drum brake at front and 110 mm drum brake at rear as per the 100cc class. Both the brakes felt very good while braking. However the rear brake pedal needs to be pressed hardly to get desired result. I interacted with so many Discover owners about the braking they said that braking is good enough but the brake pads worn out very fast.

As far as 100cc class concern Drum brakes are enough but Honda has gone one step ahead and equipped CB Twister with Disc brake.

CB Twister has 240 mm front disc brake at front and 110 mm drum brake at rear. Also, it comes with drum brake variant which has 130 mm drum brake at front. To be frank I didn’t find CB Twister disc brake that much effective as disc brakes are known for, in fact drum brake version worked very effective. Apart from this you need to apply more pressure on front lever to get effective braking in disc brake version. It is the rear brake which works very effective on disk brake version.

Bajaj Discover: 3.5/4 | Honda CB Twister: 4/5

Style and Build Quality

Bajaj Discover retains its plane jane looks as far as styling concern. Nothing new in Discover’s styling. It has the same 6 year old headlight with twin pilot lamps which still looks good. The same LED tail light which still looks good than any other 100cc bike. The same tank which feels litter bit sporty and muscular compare to other 100cc bike. The same grab rail and alloy wheel with the same paint quality.

I personally don’t like the paint quality of Discover. The graphics looks cool. The basic tank filler looks outdated on Discover tank. The mirrors look good and provide adequate visibility. Discover offers four colour choices black blue, black green, black magnepa and flame red. Overall built quality of Discover leaves some room for improvement. Overall looks of Discover still have some charm like Passion looks but it’s high time for Discover to have some fresh styling.

Honda has made a true style icon for 100cc segment and that is CB Twister. CB Twister styling is inspired from its eldest brother Honda CB1000R. The curvy headlight with screenless front cowl and curvy indicators enhance its front look. The floating side cowl which is rare in the 100cc segment gives the bike bigger and sporty look. The side cowl also channels air to engine to enhance engine cooling. The muscular fuel tank of CB Twister looks most stylish in the 100cc segment. The V Shaped alloy wheels first in the 100cc segment. A short muffler looks good but I personally like to have bigger muffler on CB Twister.

The tail light derives cue from Honda shine. The tail looks short but attractive. The half chain case cover is novelty in 100cc segment. It looks sporty but increases maintenance part of chain lubing and cleaning. It seems like CB Twister has followed Japanese trend of forward biased styling. Moreover the bike is aerodynamically designed so that you don’t have wind force problem riding at higher speed. The mirrors look trendy but do not provide adequate visibility.

Paint and finish quality is of top class. The rear plastic grab rail which has steel tube inside does not look good on CB Twister moreover the plastic quality is not up to the mark. CB Twister offers five colour choices of metallic yellow, pearl nightstar black, pearl siena red, pearl fiji blue and candy palm green. The overall built quality of CB Twister leaves very little room for improvement. As far as looks concern CB Twister has truly redefined 100cc segment and no bike in 100cc segment can come close to CB Twister. It’s FZ of 100 cc segment.

Bajaj Discover: 3.5/5 | Honda CB Twister: 4.5/5

Electricals and Instrument Panel

Bajaj Discover has retained its plane jane looks of speedometer (we might have digital display as upgrade in future) which was there in Discover 125cc. It includes speedometer, trip meter and fuel gauge. On the dashboard you have neutral indicator, Low battery indicator, side indicator and high beam indicator. Discover got maintenance free battery which is rarity in 100cc segment. For the front headlight unit Discover got 35/35 watt bulb with separate twin pilot lamps.

You don’t have problem while riding in dark night as the light beam is clear and cover much of the visibility area. The rear got LED tail lamp which looks very good in night with side light indicators. Discover has class leading switchgear quality. It also has pass switch which is very useful on highway while overtaking in night. Horn sounds good but not as seen on Pulsar. Beside this Discover has DC lighting system which ensures your bulb last long. It also has battery protector unit which ensures your headlight will not work until the engine starts.

CB Twister has got entirely fresh speedometer which looks trendy. The speedometer combines fuel gauge and speedometer in one single unit rather than two different unit seen on Discover. The speedometer also incorporates neutral indicator, high beam indicator and side light indicator which we generally see on dashboard of other bikes. The dashboard has nothing except Honda logo.

CB Twister also has maintenance free battery as seen on Discover. For the front light CB Twister got 35/35 watts halogen light. The tail lamp looks like Hero Honda ambition’s tail lamp. The curvy side indicators look nice with front headlight unit. The light beam is clear and apt but lacks in covering area of visibility in the dark night. The switchgear lacks in quality and felt rough while driving. CB Twister does not have pass switch and trip meter as seen on Discover. Horn sounds better than other Honda motorcycle. Overall it has basic package except trendy speedometer.

Bajaj Discover: 4.5/5 | Honda CB Twister: 3.5/5

Ride and Handling

On the ride front Bajaj Discover gives you pure commuter bike ride feeling but it excels in this criterion. The seat has been redesigned and well padded to give comfortable ride to pillion on long journey. Discover saddle height kept at lower so that a 5ft 6 inch tall (or Short) man can easily ride the bike. The handlebar height has been increased so that the saddle height will not create any problem for tall rider. Discover has an upright seating posture which is standard in 100cc class.

The traditional tank design of Discover offers good knee recess while riding. The palm grip felt soft and much improved from earlier versions of Discover. The foot pegs are positioned rightly both for front and rear. It has very good stability both in terms of straight line and cornering thanks to its longer wheelbase. It comes with “ease of handling” as a standard feature. It has very good ride quality but if ridden at higher speed for long time the fatigue factor starts showing up due to vibrations at higher speed. Although vibrations are there the bike remain stable at higher speed. Overall Discover offers class leading ride and handling quality as far as 100cc commuter segment concern.

I don’t have word to speak about CB Twister ride as far as 100cc segment concern. The ride of CB Twister made me to think the way we look at 100cc bikes. It felt like I am riding a sports bike. Its true 100cc sports bike like Pulsar 135 LS even if the seating posture remains upright same as Discover. The seat is well padded and I felt very comfortable while seating as a pillion on CB Twister.

The handlebar position felt very comfortable. Moreover the tank design offers class leading knee recess. The palm grip felt very soft. Both the front and rear foot pegs are well positioned. The bike remains very stable while cornering at higher speed but Discover offers better straight line stability than CB Twister. It is also very comfortable for long distance high speed cruising as vibrations are lower compare to Discover at higher speed. Overall CB Twister has truly redefined the ride factor of 100cc class. It has the fun factor of riding which none of the other 100cc bike has.

Bajaj Discover: 4/5 | Honda CB Twister: 4.5/5


This is the area where 100cc segment owner is not concern much and the same thing reflects in the Discover’s performance figure. It takes more than 10 seconds to reach 0-60 mark. Although I have not tested the top speed of bike according to most of the leading automobile magazine it’s in the band of 90-95 KMPH. Discover’s performance figures are adequate enough according to its class.

But it’s Honda CB Twister which is clear winner in performance segment of 100cc bikes. It can do 0-60 stuff in just little bit over 7 seconds, three seconds faster than Discover. Top speed is another area where it has outperformed every other bike in 100cc segment it can easily do over 95 KMPH according to most of the leading automobile magazine. The performance figures of CB Twister are really outstanding considering the class in which it operates.

Bajaj Discover: 4/5 | Honda CB Twister: 5/5

Fuel Efficiency

Mileage is the trump card of 100cc segment and the area which is dominated by Bajaj Discover. Discover is able to return 70-75 Km / liter in city riding condition something which other bikes can dream off. It is the biggest reason why Discover is selling like hot cake. Even with worst riding it can give you mileage of 63 KM/ Liter. If you ride in the range of 50-55 KMPH on highway you can stretch this figure to 85 KM/ liter.

For taking correct picture of fuel efficiency you need to ride the bike around 400- 500 kilometres which was not possible in my case so I asked the Discover owners about the fuel efficiency and above figures are indications of the same. Only two persons said me that he has reported mileage drop to 65 KMPL in city ride condition after 10,000 kilometres which I think ok kind of thing. With 8 liter fuel tank Discover can give you range of 600 Kilometres so less fuel station visits in a month. You also have ride control switch which indicates move from economy zone to power zone while accelerating throttle in order to get better mileage.

On the other hand despite giving class leading performance figure Honda CB Twister does not compromise on Fuel efficiency front. The bike reported 60-65KM / liter in city ride conditions and 58 KM / liter as worst fuel efficiency figure. I don’t think we can stretch the figure on highway as the bike is meant to enjoy highway riding but if ridden carefully on highway in the band of 50-55 KMPH it can return 70 KM / liter figure. With 8 liter fuel tank CB Twister can give you 560 Kilometres range with single full tank.

Bajaj Discover: 5/5 | Honda CB Twister: 4/5


Bajaj Discover has Ex-showroom price of Rs. 40,900 (On road Rs. 46 ,600) for Kick start version and Rs. 44,020 (On road Rs. 49,950) for electric start version in Ahmedabad. From the 1st January 2011 the same bikes is going to cost Rs.1000 more means around Ex-showroom price of 42,000 for kick start and 45,000 for Self start version. As against Honda CB Twister has Ex-showroom price of Rs. 44,837 (on road Rs. 49,690) for Kick Start, Rs. 47,710 (on road Rs. 52,749) for self start and Rs. 50,834 (on road Rs. 56,073) for self start and disk brake version. Both Discover and CB Twister justifies the prices as CB Twister is 110cc engine compare to Discover 94.38 cc and it offers stunning style too but CB Twister looks little bit overpriced.

Bajaj Discover: 4.5/5 | Honda CB Twister: 4/5


At last who is best out of two? Both bikes have different package to offer. One has segment beating fuel efficiency and features generally not seen in 100cc class other has segment beating style and power. One is true 100cc commuter the other is true 100cc sports bike. Both are purpose built bikes and aim different market segment. So let’s take it other way if fuel efficiency is your priority and want value for money package Discover is a bike you should go for.

If looks and power is your priority and don’t mind to spend some extra thousand bucks for the same. CB Twister is the bike you should go for. But it is unfair if after so long comparison I will not declare a winner here. Both bikes have a similar overall rating but CB Twister is overall winner as it slightly compromises on suspension and fuel efficiency front compare to Bajaj Discover.

Overall Rating

Bajaj Discover: 4/5 | Honda CB Twister: 4/5